The Cult of You

selfie-1022967_640Whenever someone puts something on social media, usually Facebook, which causes me to exclaim out loud “who could give a **** about that?”, the answer is I COULD!

The stuff I really don’t give a **** about passes by without my even noticing or knowing it existed.

The stuff I am shouting about is pressing my buttons. And although my first thought is what a numpty you are for doing that, the real lesson is for me.

  • What is it about your Facebook Live I don’t like?
  • Why does your pouting at your iPhone in a selfie rile me up?
  • Why does your endless talking about yourself make me so cross?
  • Why will I never watch your tedious video or webinar?

It is about your content offending my values. It makes me not your ideal client and this is never going to be a problem for you. It just provides the opportunity for me to examine and review my own beliefs. It presents a growth opportunity for me. You are irrelevant in this. Sorry!

I can watch and enjoy drama and documentary TV and films but homemade on-the-hoof amateur video engages my attention for nanoseconds before I click away, disinterested and bored, too busy to linger that way for very long.

Photos of people, especially selfies, don’t do it for me. My brother is always saying of my holiday snaps “where are the people?” but that’s not what interests me in a photo. Show me a view any day, especially of a beach or the sea or the moon or a sunset. The exceptions to this are my clients, out and about, enjoying their lives and their holidays. I LOVE those! I know, weird, me.

I have zero interest in what people look like and selfies are an abomination to my eyes, particularly as a sign of the times and the way we live now which is all about me, me, me. My focus is on you, you, you. Well, not you, the producer of the pouting selfie, you the ideal client/reader of this piece.

If you insist on taking too long to get to the point in your tedious video and webinar, my patience wears thin waiting for you to talk about anything other than yourself.

My value here then is modesty. The more up in my face you are, the less I enjoy it. I’ll come to your personal qualities, if and when I decide to buy something from you, to the extent that they are even relevant.

No wonder my clients get confused about marketing and feel icky about what they call “blowing  my own trumpet” because this is a thorny place, difficult to get right at first and to find the balance ongoing in an ever-changing marketplace and world.

But let’s not throw the baby out with the bathwater. I’m a marketer. I just choose ways which I think are subtler or which feel true and more authentic to me. Elegance is one of my values, dignity another, subtlety a third.

OK, I talk about myself, but you are not obliged to watch me doing that in a video or a selfie which interestingly I always feel is “shoved” at me. It isn’t. It just feels like that to me. So there’s the growth opportunity, again. Perception is everything.

It just teaches me that there’s areas of discomfort and some might always remain like that because that’s my view, reviewed and yet still unchanging, and on another occasion I might change my mind about, given enough decent and higher-quality examples to enjoy. I might even applaud you for putting out content before it’s perfect, especially if you are my client, because that’s how we learn, by experimentation.

So if you are relatively new to using social media to market yourself online, you can dip your toe in the water in whatever way feels right to you. Start with something you’ve noticed achieves engagement and when we ask for more, give us more.

In a conversation last week one of my clients used the word “bragging” to describe how she would feel using her Facebook profile to talk about her business. Bragging is her discomfort, “showing off” is mine.  But neither of us is obliged to do anything which feels like that to us. Social media doesn’t make us do that, it is just a medium we can use in our own unique way.

Most of us are not over-examining or judging other people’s stuff, it’s passing on by. We’ve got a life, or we are self-obsessed. We notice what we like, what interests us and what gets our goat.

We can unfollow without necesssarily un-friending, unless we choose to, those who share and post content that consistently bores us or politically offends. We can notice how much judgement and assumption we bring to that stuff and we can hallucinate that’s what others are thinking about us, when mostly they are not. And even if they are, so what? That’s their stuff too.

There’s no need to turn into one of those people you think who are doing it “wrong” just because you start to share content yourself.

  • Observe those who do it well
  • Work out why
  • Model how you want to do it, drawing on those
  • Look at how they use their FB Page and personal profile well in conjunction with one another
  • See how they can be a more human business owner on their profile and a more professional one on their Page
  • If we are interested in you as one of your FB friends or family or former colleagues or whatever, then we’ll want to know what you are up to these days so don’t be afraid to tell us.
  • People are interested. Or they’re not. No matter. If not, it will pass them by.
  • You are not going to turn into your worst nightmare of a social media junkie or over-sharer just because you start to tell us some little nuggets about your business and your life.
  • Neither do you automatically need to turn into a bragger (or me a show-off!) and neither will you suddenly start bombarding us with too much.
  • Your judgement will not go out the window.
  • You never have to be naked and you never have to tell us anything you don’t want us to know. You need never post a video or a selfie if you don’t like them.
  • If you put something up you then regret you can take it down again.
  • Put a toe in the water.
  • Show don’t tell.

And, finally, just because I don’t give a **** about that, doesn’t mean other people won’t.

Do it your way and attract your tribe who will love you for it, for your way of doing things, of being brave, of going first, of being out there. I won’t be joining the cult of you, or notice, or care, and that’ll be just peachy for both of us.

Your Biz Your Way

If you have enjoyed reading my words here, you might also enjoy my book - Your Biz Your Way: Learning to Trust Yourself. Relax! You've Got This. Get a chunky free sample and/or buy the book here Read My Book

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