Move over, Facebook and Twitter.  Social media is  being displaced as the hot topic in marketing as a new truth dawns.  News flash: WHAT you have to say is at least as important as where you say it!

Content marketing is the new holy grail, and brands are challenged to create content worth paying attention to.  No easy task for most, for one big reason.  Ego.

Whether personal, professional, or corporate, ego is the biggest obstacle to creating something that matters to the people you want to reach.  In his brilliant cartoon and related blogpost, Tom Fishburne shares how brands still view content marketing as All About Me, slapping a new social media band on an old advertorial hat.

Ego is a failure of empathy

Your job, your brand, your company don’t matter.  Harsh, but true.  Most people are going through their lives splendidly without giving you a second thought.   If you shout at them, loudly and expensively enough, you might get their attention for a minute.  But only a minute—then you start to get really annoying.  The new media landscape may give you all kinds of new tools and toys to play with, but if you’re still just talking about me me me, why on earth would people stick around to listen?

You don’t matter…unless you do

There is a cure for the problem of ego.  It’s empathy: understanding the thoughts, feelings and perspective of others—and caring about them, dammit.  In my next post I’ll explore how to use empathy to create a basis for great content marketing.

Meanwhile, enjoy a quick trip back to English 101.  The Romantic poets may not have had Twitter accounts, but they knew a thing or two about timeless human truths and what happens to a message of ego—even when chiseled in stone…


I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: `Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed.
And on the pedestal these words appear —
“My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!”
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away.’

by Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792-1822)

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