As the year and the decade draw to an end, success is a topic on most people’s minds.
In 1,000 True Fans, Kevin Kelly develops a marketing paradigm for artists of all types, including musicians.
A True Fan is defined as someone who will purchase anything and everything you produce. They will drive 200 miles to see you sing. They will buy the super deluxe re-issued hi-res box set of your stuff even though they have the low-res version.
Focus on connecting with people. Convert 1,000 lesser fans into true fans, which is all you need to earn a living.
In First, organize 1,000, Seth Godin generalizes the model and applies it to politics and business, “1,000 people voting as a bloc can change local politics forever. 1,000 people willing to try a new restaurant you find for them gives you the ability to make an entrepreneur successful and change the landscape of your town.”
Again, the focus is on connecting with people, “You don’t find customers for your products. You find products for your customers.”
Connecting with People through Social Media
I can write an article or post a link that sparks a public conversation. Some remarks can then lead to private discussions via direct messages, email or telephone. If I help somebody or solve a problem, I now have a true fan.
Why 1,000 True Fans?
Don’t attach importance to one thousand. 1,000 is a round number, chosen arbitrarily, to take the number of fans or customers needed to earn a good living — which is fairly abstract — and make it more concrete.
Unfortunately, the emphasis on 1,000 true fans might lead us to “see the forest for the trees” but to lose sight of each individual tree. However, each individual we touch is, somewhat paradoxically, as important as the overall group.
Impact the life of even one true fan, and you have achieved a measure of success.
Real Social Media Success
The changes made possible by technology and social media in the ways we communicate and conduct business have been phenomenal. How glorious it would be if we could witness corresponding improvements in the human condition.
Sadly, the opposite is true. Technology and social media are used for evil as well as good, and our world and its peoples continue to have little respite from their fear, pain and suffering.
Our world is made up of individuals. We, as individuals, must seek ways to bridge our differences, to heal our conflicts, and to ameliorate our Planet Earth. We, as individuals, must connect with other individuals, through our businesses and otherwise, and help them improve their lives.
It would be super if, in our businesses, we could look beyond the bottom line and use social media to make the globe not only smaller, but kinder, saner and safer as well.
That would be real social media success.
May we all achieve success in 2010. Have a happy new year!
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