Wednesday Updates

Things we're thinking about this week.

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Marketers run everythingProbably the most annoying thing right now is all the 'broetry' on LinkedIn - it's made the site an annoying hub of terrible copywriting. The issue is that it's doing it's job and getting the engagement that people want due to the way the algorithm is working on the platform. The real problem (not just on LinkedIn) is that people just plain want to find 'hacks' and beat the system, and this leads to marketers ruining all the fun - it's why Facebook and Instagram have had to evolve and go with a non-chronological feed. I real damn shame. Marketers suck.

Employee Happiness - Think about this a lot more than anything else (why is it that when a company get's bigger, the culture usually gets worse?). Warby Parker's approach is refreshing and very simple - the idea of using balloons is an awesome way of bringing attention and starting conversations. The best ideas are often super simple.

The idea of luck - Taking a mathematical approach - I always say that you only have to be better than average to be successful. Very often it's just being in the right place at the right time, and there are many ways to 'artificially' create these situations. Just have to be cognizant and work towards it. Don't you just hate it when people say 'If you're so good, why aren't you rich?' - this is a great way of looking at it from a different perspective (luck).

Wednesday Updates

Some things we've been thinking about this week.

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The (rising) domination of podcasts - looking back it almost seems inevitable. What's really interesting is looking at how the medium and the approach has changed in the last couple of years. I'm looking forward to more production (again Gimlet does a really good job). Whether this will one day all be replaced by visual content is yet to be seen (driver-less cars?). Exciting times.

What do employees want? - This is an interesting way to look at the issue - I don't think it's something anyone is going to solve anytime soon (largely because it's constantly evolving). What's more interesting is how companies can embed these areas they've identified and infused it into the company culture. Easier said than done.

YouTube - not the glamorous life it appears to be - a lot of people are becoming incredibly famous by creating content (and a lot of it isn't good content) and it's easy to get sucked into the world and think that you can do the same (and better). However, it's not all that it's cracked up to be. What's missing is that need to create art - it's something that calls out to people (if you're doing it for money, turn away now as it's not as lucrative as you think). The message that you can create is more important than the riches you might one day fall into - this message gets lost far too often.

 

Wednesday Updates

Things we're thinking about this week.

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MindfullnessDoing things because you're supposed to be doing things and not because want to do something is completely different. But it gets lost in thought all the time. There's precedent to do something, and ultimately it's what you do. You try and try and try to do things differently but you end up taking the easy way out and copy what you've always done in the past. It's not on purpose, but it's definitely easy. It's something that needs constant work, realising the intention of one's actions, but it will take time. Writing it down might help.

Wednesday Updates

Things we're thinking about this week.

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People are hired and paid to do what they do best. Let them. This makes me laugh and cry at the same time. All day I hear about why companies don't need help with social or copywriting because they can just do it themselves. Ugh. It takes years to figure out what the little details are what makes good work work (often it's having a full stop, in this case, it's repeating a word twice).

Ryan Holiday with 28 lessons from master creators. I hate Ryan Holiday. He's effortlessly (probably not so effortlessly) understood his target audience and writes specifically for them. Every word he publishes, I can't help but be drawn into and read. Every single article or book. There is so much to learn.

Podcasts? The holy grail? In an effort to capture attention, it seems like podcasts have found their way into many people's daily ritual. It's perfect for the commute or mundane work (something 99% of the world deals with). The great thing now is that there's quality, creative content out there if you just search for it (Gimlet is a great place to start). I still believe that video is next, but it will still be 3-5 years before it dominates (still waiting for the tech to make it an easier consumed format).

Gaming the system. The system is obviously broken, and if a kid can game TripAdvisor (which I hate), then so can anyone else. It's an interesting way of looking at things, and a good case of playing towards an audience. Understanding algorithms help make stunts like this work. Also, TripAdvisor is terrible (did I mention that already?), someone needs to fix/make a better alternative.

 

Wednesday Updates

Things we're thinking about this week:

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Learn a skill, be creative and provide more value - in the modern day, if you want to learn something you just have to search for it. In half an hour you can learn how to conduct a full photoshoot. You just need to decide what you want to do, don't be afraid and start. On the flip side, everyone is a critic nowadays, just be careful and be learn to be self-aware.

Ruthlessly assess everything - this is a good place to start. Gone are the school days when you can fail at something and claim you didn't try hard. You can't fail anymore, so put in the effort and make it work. Nobody is expecting perfection on the first go, but be honest (with yourself and others) and you may discover something new.

Bring in the creativity - to some (Scott Adams), creativity and innovation aren't only about changing the world, but combining two skills together to make something new and interesting again. In this case, it's looking at design via Harry Potter.

Storytelling is still more important than anything - in our quest to tell the best stories (we're ever learning) it's hard not to notice what Gimlet Media is doing. It's a space to stay tuned to as they're creating a new age media company with an interesting voice - all while letting creators do what they do best - create!

Social Media Manifesto 2018

To help define and guide the actions for 2018, I’ve decided to take a look at social media and create a set of rules to live by (yes, these will undoubtedly evolve over time because damn those algorithms).

  • Create value, not for yourself, but for everyone else.
  • Create a community. 
  • Ruthlessly assess why you do what you do. 
  • It may be difficult, but it's difficult for everyone.
  • Monitor what you can, but accept that some things are out of your control.
  • Test, test and test some more.
  • Be more honest, be more human.

The ideas here are simple but often forgotten. It's incredibly easy to get caught up in the news and changes, but actually creating value will ALWAYS bring success (even if you don't believe it, you should act like it does).

Here's to 2018.