Yeah, it’s remarkable, BUT…

There are a LOT of remarkable ideas out there.
There are a LOT of remarkable people out there.
There are a LOT of remarkable businesses out there.


Remarkability is no longer enough.

In my experience, there are two levels of remarkability.

First, there’s BASELINE remarkability.

“Something worth making a remark about,” as Seth Godin explained in Purple Cow.

Which is good. And essential.

But again, it’s not enough.

See, in ADDITION to (just) being remarkable; you, your idea and your business must advance to the second level: ENDURING remarkability.

Which means answering, “Yes!” to the following questions:

1. Yeah, it’s remarkable … but is it relevant?
Because if it isn’t, no media outlet will give you the time of day.

2. Yeah, it’s remarkable … but do people even care?
Because if they don’t, they’re not going to take any action as a result.

3. Yeah, it’s remarkable … but is it worthwhile?
Because if it’s not, nobody is going to see any value behind it.

4. Yeah, it’s remarkable … but is it marketable?
Because if it’s not, you’ll waste your company’s time, money and energy.

5. Yeah, it’s remarkable … but is there quality substance behind it?
Because if there isn’t, it doesn’t matter how many people are talking about it.

6. Yeah, it’s remarkable … but does it support your brand?
Because if it doesn’t, what’s the point?

– – –

That’s enduring remarkability. And now, to go a bit deeper, consider these three examples:

1. Remember the story about the girl who had been hiccuping for three weeks? OK, I admit, that was pretty funny. And she got LOTS of media attention.

BUT, HERE’S MY QUESTION: What were people supposed to do, feel or think differently as a result?

AND, HERE’S MY OTHER QUESTION: Where is that girl NOW?

2. YouTube has a LOT of really funny, really ridiculous videos that are certainly remarkable. Hey, even I’ve emailed friends encouraging them to check out certain clips.

BUT, HERE’S MY QUESTION: Are YouTube viewing experiences anything other than 20 seconds of mindless entertainment?

WHICH LEADS TO MY OTHER QUESTION: In a year, will anybody care about (or even remember) a video about some 12 year-old kid who sang karaoke to Queen in his mom’s basement?

3. Remember Crystal Pepsi? Sure, it was a cool, novel idea that LOTS of people told their friends about.

BUT, HERE’S MY QUESTION: Did all that hype change the fact that Crystal Pepsi tasted like feet?

AND, HERE’S MY OTHER QUESTION: Does word of mouth even matter if the product lacks the quality to support it?

– – –

Ultimately, when it comes to being remarkable, remember three things:
Don’t force it.
Because it won’t be authentic.

Don’t be all shtick and no substance.
Because you need to have both.

Don’t be remarkable just for the sake of being remarkable.
Because that’s not going to last.

Instead, make sure you, your idea and your company are remarkable on (both) baseline AND enduring levels.

Otherwise, people can talk all they want about you.

But it won’t be enough.

Why are people talking about YOU?

For a list called, “19 Ways to Build Buzz about Your New Website,” send an email to and I’ll help you build baseline AND enduring remarkability!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag

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19 Ways to Build Buzz about Your New Website

Oscar Wilde once remarked, “The only thing worse than being talked about is NOT being talked about.”

So. Who’s talking about you?

Well, if you’re not happy with your answer, perhaps these practices, ideas and suggestions will help spread the word about your new website:

1. FIRST THINGS FIRST:Build remarkability into your ideas before they go public. Are you (already) worth making a remark about?

2. Give it away. If you want it to be viral, (some) of your content HAS to be free. What are YOU giving away?

3. Stop writing. Nobody’s going to read all that copy. Think images, not words. And keep it clean and above the fold. How are YOU using video?

4. Harness the power of ITunes. They have AMAZING marketing and reach a LOT of people that might not ever GO to your site. Podcasting – audio or video – is the key to reaching new audiences via web 2.0. How many people’s IPods are YOU on?

5. Use Digg and Delicious. Screw Oprah. Digg and Delicious are WAY more powerful (and a LOT less annoying) than her. Also, if someone comes to your website and doesn’t know what Social Bookmarking tool are, forget about it. Let the techies and bloggers who DO know what those buttons mean to use them to spread your message. Stop trying to educate the people who don’t “get” social networking. It’s not your job to convert them. Do people Digg you?

6. Use RSS. This is the PERFECT tool for building your permission asset. How many subscribers do YOU have?

7. Make it easy to share. Include boxes and buttons for link sharing, i.e., “Send this site to a friend” and embeddable HTML tags for videos, playlists and pictures. Are you making your website really, really easy to share?

8. REMEMBER: It’s not how many people come to your site, it’s WHO comes to your site. Eyeballs are overrated. So don’t get caught up in traffic, hits and the like. Are you focusing on the number of eyeballs or the RIGHT eyeballs?

9. People. Find raving fans that have big mouths, market to them and then get out of the way. How many fans do YOU have?

10. Build suspense. Whether you use an ezine, RSS feed or blog, have a countdown during the final month before launch. Build anticipation. For example, you could use a screen shot to drum up interest at the end of each blog post. Does anyone even KNOW about your new website?

11. Humor wins. Think about the last time you said or heard someone say: “Dude, you’ve GOT to check out this website!” More than likely, it’s because somebody, somewhere, was funny. What’s humorous about YOUR site?

12. Get ‘em at hello. Two seconds. That’s about how much time you have to convince someone that your website is worth telling her friends about. So, make sure it passes “The Cubicle Test,” i.e., If somebody walked by her coworker’s workspace, would she stop in tracks and say, “Hey, cool! What website is THAT?”

13. THREE WORDS: Other people’s traffic. What joint ventures are YOU working on?

14. Purpose. Don’t make it a website, make it a destination. Assure that people will actually stick around for more than 60 seconds. Make it community based and interactive through message boards, comments and other social networking tools. Keep the feedback loop constantly flowing. How frequently do people come BACK to your website?

15. Story. Make sure your site has a tab, box or content page that includes “Your Story.” After all, that’s all marketing is: storytelling. Because people don’t remember ads, they remember stories. NOTE: If possible, make “Your Story” a video. Let people see you doing what you do. Let people get to know you as a person, not a professional. What’s YOUR story?

16. User generated content. Enable customers to contribute and participate. Allow them to create their own profiles, accounts and usernames. Create a forum where they can discuss, share and upload their own pictures and videos with other users. They will take ownership of your website as their own and tell everyone they know. How are you giving your visitors a piece of the pie?

17. Simple. Simplicity is better, quicker, easier and most importantly, what customers crave. Could your website be explained to a five year-old?

18. Revisitability. Update new content at LEAST once a week, if not daily. This will bring people back again and again. REMEMBER: Websites are like newspapers – nobody wants to read them if they’re two years old. So, consider embedding a blog into the homepage. It works! If I had to do it again, my website and blog would be the same thing. When was the last time you updated YOUR content?

19. Ask yourself three questions. “What’s remarkable about my website?” “Why would someone come to (and stay at) my website for more than 60 seconds?” “Why would someone tell her friends about my website consistently?” Be honest. Are you evaluating your website objectively?

What’s your #1 tip for building buzz about your new website?

Share your secret here!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag

Who’s blogging about YOUR website?

Tune in to The Marketing Channel on!

Watch video lessons to get people talking about YOU!

Being More Parodyable = Being More Profitable

Ask yourself three questions:

1. When was the last time someone parodied you?
2. When was the last time someone parodied your idea?
3. When was the last time someone parodied your company?

If your answer is, “Never,” then that should tell your something.

Kind of reminds us of the old saying, “Imitation is the highest form of flattery.”

See, if people aren’t at least TALKING about you – much less joking about you – you’re in trouble.

LESSON LEARNED: Businesses that get made fun of get more business.


Obviously, Enron isn’t exactly a thriving corporation anymore.

Obviously, Crystal Pepsi didn’t exactly win the Soft Drink of Year.

But in many cases, people and ideas and organizations that are joked about, parodied – even made fun of – are usually the ones who are making a name for themselves.

And in my experience (as someone who gets made fun of a lot) there are five reasons why parody leads to profit:

1. It means you’re getting NOTICED. Amidst the clutter, infinite choices – and within the narrow window of time you have to get your message out – it’s an accomplishment just to get someone’s attention!

So, because nobody notices normal anymore, breaking through that initial clutter is the most important step. Just being recognized is a victory!

2. It means you’re being REMEMBERED. That’s the next step. Because usually, those who get noticed … get remembered. And those who get remembered, get business. That is, as long as there’s SOME substance to back up the shtick.

Of course, the brain (still) HAS to be appealed to emotionally! So, that’s why when it comes to memory, humor works best. That which is ridiculous and exaggerated is remembered.

3. It means you’re getting TALKED ABOUT. Oscar Wilde once remarked, “The only thing worse than being talked about is NOT being talked about.” So, even if you or your ideas are being parodied, joked about or spoofed on, think of it as a compliment AND a victory.

REMEMBER:If your clients are not actively telling their friends about you, that probably means THIS.

4. You’re being IMITATED. Seth Godin recently came out with an action figure. It’s HILARIOUS! And it’s a perfect example of being parodyable.

So, if people are imitating your idea, that should tell you a few things. Things like:

o It’s remarkable
o It’s worth copying
o It’s simple to understand
o It’s the origin, not the echo
o It’s unique, not different.

Sounds like a good idea to me!

5. It means you”re being MARKETED. Sure, it might sting a bit to see a group of 16 year-old kids parody your company in a YouTube video. But at the lowest common denominator – that’s still free publicity! If I were you, I’d send them a thank you note. Er, maybe some brownies.

– – –

Now, understandably, nobody likes being made fun of.

So, I’m not encouraging you to go out there and humiliate yourself. Nor am I suggesting that any company who gets made fun of will automatically become successful.

However, let us not forget the power of the poke.

Because in my experience, parody often leads to profit.

After all, if people aren’t at least TALKING about you, your idea and your company, you’re doing something wrong.

Who’s making fun of YOU?

Share your best example of a successful company or idea that’s been parodied!

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag

…only 12 more days until goes ON AIR!

If your clients are not actively telling their friends about you…

Oscar Wilde once remarked, “The only thing worse than being talked about is NOT being talked about.”

So, if your customers are not ACTIVELY telling their friends about your business…

1. That means you’re probably selling a dead brand.

2. That means you’re probably different, not unique.

3. That means you’re probably doing something wrong.

4. That means you’re probably perceived as a commodity.

5. That means you’re probably not word of mouth worthy.

6. That means you’re probably creating customers, not FANS.

7. That means you’re probably not getting much new business.

8. That means you’re probably not doing something important.

9. That means you’re probably not as great as you think you are.

10. That means you’re probably boring, unremarkable and normal.

11. That means you’re probably not making the mundane memorable.

12. That means you’re probably spending too much money on marketing.

13. That means you’re probably not expanding your overall customer base.

14. That means you’re probably poorly positioned in their minds, not in the market.

15. That means you’re probably creating customer SATISFACTION, not customer loyalty or insistence.

Look. Word of mouth is everything. And anonymity is your greatest barrier to business success.

SO REMEMBER: businesses that get talked about get more business.

Who’s telling their friends about YOU?

If you’re clients are not actively telling their friends about you, what (else) does that mean?

* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag

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