Are the new rules for you?

I write about strategies to turn fans into customers and customers into fans. I also share ways to use real-time strategies to spread ideas, influence minds, and build business.

Social Media  |  Viral Marketing  |  New Rules of Marketing and PR  |  Public Relations  |  Marketing  |  Advertising  |  Corporate blogging

I've just finished a whirlwind book promotion blitz that centered around the "birthday" of my book on June 4. Thanks to everyone who has blogged about The New Rules of Marketing & PR (more than 100 of you!). And many thanks to everyone who has purchased the book (more than 2,000 of you so far!).

I'm thrilled that the book reached number 66 overall on Amazon. It has been the top PR book on Amazon and in the top 5 marketing books since publication. Thank you for your support!

I've delivered three major speeches this past week in three different cities. Damn, I'm beat! Book Expo America in New York, National Investor Relations Institute in Orlando (my gig was sponsored by NASDAQ), and the Vocus / PRWeb user conference in Washington DC.

Here are select reviews of the speeches:
> Book Expo America via American Booksellers Association

> Vocus / PRWeb via Matt

> No bloggers at NIRI? Hmm… I guess that says something about Investor Relations people…

When I give speeches like these ones on the new rules of marketing and PR, many people are excited to get out there and make it happen. They want to start a blog right away or generate some news releases or begin buyer persona research in preparation for writing a marketing and PR plan that will guide them to create a content-rich Web site.

And inevitably I get detractors. These are the people with folded arms who stare at me with hostility or just look at the floor for a half hour. They want things to remain safe and comfortable. You know what? That's fine. It's OK to continue to invest in expensive advertising and try to convince the media to write about you. Go for it.

But in the audience there is always a third group of people who tend to feel a bit overwhelmed. There is just too much information, they say, or too many new and unfamiliar ideas. Some people think this stuff just too complex and time-consuming to tackle, especially given an already hectic schedule. Hey, we all have stuff on our plates, and for most of us, implementing the ideas I talk about will represent an addition to our workload.

But here's one of the greatest things about the new rules of marketing and PR: you can implement these ideas in bits and pieces!

In fact, I don’t expect anybody to implement all the ideas. Heck, I don’t do that many of them myself (OK, I admitted it—don’t tell). Yes, I have a blog, and it is very important to me. But I don't have my own podcast, and I don't have a MySpace or Facebook page. But that's OK. I just do what I can and what works for me. And so should you.

Unlike a linear, offline marketing campaign where you must take a methodical, step-by-step approach leading up to a big "release day," the Web is…well, it's a Web. You can add to the Web at any time because it is iterative, not linear.

Think about the last print advertisement you or others in your organization did. Everything had to be perfect, requiring thorough proofreading, tons of approvals from your colleagues (or your spouse), lengthy consultation with a bunch of third parties such as advertising agencies and a printers, and—above all—lots of money. Your neck was on the line if there was a screw-up, so you obsessed over the details. Contrast that with a Web content initiative that you can implement quickly, get people to check out live, and make changes to on the fly. It really is much less stressful to create an online program.

Heck, if you create a Web page that doesn't work for you, you can just delete it. You can't do that with a print ad or direct-mail campaign. So I would urge you to think about how you might selectively experiment with the new rules rather than fret about coordinating them all and trying to get everything right on the first go.

Experiment and see what works.

I experiment a lot. For example, I've had some great successes with viral marketing. But I've also had a bunch of dismal flops. That's OK, people don’t remember the flops and it didn't cost any money (just some time).