In this series, we will cover some of the first 60 days of integrating social media into your overall business and marketing strategy. These trainings are designed to be completed in an hour (after all we have businesses to run).
This seems to be the favorite lesson of many – and count me among them. The bookstore lesson.
In some ways, the bookstore is like the conversphere itself:
- Many genres of books
- Different types of publications (books, magazines, pop-ups, blank journals)
- Multi-media (music, movies, print, mini-books, giftss & accessories)
- And if we're lucky…coffee!
Before we take a step into the store, let's be aware of some of the background sound – the conversation that will take place – and recognize that its conversation about content. People talking about the books or music or even the coffee. Content is a conversation starter.
Let's start with the Magazine section:
Which magazines do you subscribe to? Or which are your favorites? Why? Are there any things (picture size or style; length of copy; white space) you might do simlarly on your blog or other social media sites?
As we look through a few of the magazines, we notice almost all of them have a set of regular departments or features. Included in every issue. In blogging, these are like a series or even a category on your blog.
As we take a few steps back, notice anything going on with the headlines? Any commonalities?
- Numbered lists
- Word: Followed by Short Sub Title
- Alliteration Allowing Alpha Adroitness
There are tons of different types of posts you can write, and you'll get great headline ideas from the magazine rack.
A lot of money goes into the research of what sells and to pay the writers of these headlines. So let's start thinking likewise.
Let's go over to the Business Books:
First, let's look at the marketing section. Holy cow! look at all the books. There's Internet Marketing, Sales, Lovemarks, Branding, No BS, and lots of Gitomer. And there are more coming — always will be.
Want to know something? Many in the profession of sales or marketing are going to buy a bunch of those titles — not just one. I say that to say this: Differentiation is important, sometimes your take on a matter is differntiation enough.
So let's take a look at a couple of similarities between books and blogs
Books have a Table of Contents and an Index. Blogs have Categories and Tags.
As a Table of Contents give a high-level overview of what the book might be about, so does the Category listing for a blog. And while an index scopes down a bit further into the keywords and phrases in a book, so does Tags do so with a blog.
While we're roaming the stacks of the bookstore, know that many of today's best sellers are writting by authors who also blog – and in some cases, the genesis of some books were a blog site blog post.
If you want some great examples of length, layout, and linking of big ideas a page at a time - check out authors like Tom Peters, Karen Salmohnson, David Meerman Scott, and books like Exploiting Chaos and Radical Careering.
As we continue to travel through the tracts and tiers, we see SCAMPERings from James Patterson's Alex Cross series (Roses Are Red, Along Came a Spider, Four Blind Mice) and Gregory MacGuire (Wicked, Mirror Mirror, and Lost).
Also notice, if you have time, that Democrats buy Al Franken and Republicans buy Bill O'Reilly (aka "we read what we already agree with"). This part suggests that some of your most avid readers and conversations will be amongst your peers (and competition).
So many other media is available. Blank books, comic books, coffee table books, photo books, discount books, "twitter" books (those mini hand-helds thingies), bookmarks, games, pens, maps, music, video…
I'm tellin' ya – I love the bookstore lesson. Ideally, we'll go together – but if geography is against us at this time, get there and stay aware.