Guest post by Mars Dorian of marsdorian.com
I luv Lady Gaga, but hate her music. Wait, what?
Ok, I don’t hate her music, I simply don’t care about it. What I do care about is how a Yankee girl built a one woman empire from scratch. She’s one of the most followed peeps on Twitter (almost 5 million followers!) and influences the whole wide world.
I have taken some of her methods and applied them to blogging. My traffic increased significantly during the last weeks, and now I know why. Let me show you the 3 biggest Gaga steps to spread your digital influence.
Reinvent your personal brand
I have seen a very early interview with Lady Gaga, and she seemed almost normal. She looked and talked like a normal girl blessed with passion.
Comparing her younger self to her current creation, I can’t help but think: What the heck happened?
Rebirth happened. Gaga wanted a life on the edge. She has transformed herself into a larger-than-life personality. Everything she does, be it fashion, video or life show, is part of a remarkable brand that people can’t ignore. Her style is so extreme that it divides the masses – you either love or hate her. The middle ground vanishes.
I call this edge-crafting. If you want to massively spread your digital influence, you have to be over-the-top in one way or another. Don’t worry, you don’t have to become Gaga-like, but a little stretching can help:
- Get your geek on. Whatever your passion is, learn everything about it. Make it the major focus of your digital life, and show that obession to your readers. Be so geeky about your stuff that people think it’s funny. Positive obession is highly infectious.
- Lick your edges. Don’t cater your message to the masses, write for your hardcore fans. The best way to do it is to be creative: imagine your true fan, the one who’d pay for reading your articles, and write for him. This will keep your style edgy.
- Become “too”. Publish images that are too big. Write posts that are too long. Have an opinion that’s too offensive. Make your design too colorful.
- Take your brand further. I love my logo, and I’ve printed it on T-shirts and pullovers. The next video I’ll publish will show me wearing my branded clothes. You don’t have to wear crazy stuff like Gaga, but if you video blog, then you should think about wearing your branded clothes.
Famous digital celebrities like Perez Hilton and Gary Vaynerchuk own this style: they have found what makes them great, and stretched that style. Don’t become extreme with everything you do, but stretch one major trait you want people to notice.
Love your fans more than your mother
I watched a recent interview with her on Larry King. She said something like this: Larry, I only care about my fans, and I want to give them the best experience possible.“
Gaga is fan-focused, and even calls them little monsters. Could she put less money in her videos and live shows and still enjoy a massive following? Probably, but she’s putting the hours in because she cares. It’s no accident that she’s got millions of die hard fans.
If you want to create a raving fan base yourself, you have to go the extra mile. Direct interaction via Facebook and Twitter is a must. Your overall goal should be: how can I create something that blows my readers away, or drastically improves their life?
I heard someone say: If you want to be successful, make someone else successful. True words.
Special bonus: give your fans a nickname, and invent a secret language that only they will understand. I call my fans Digital Crusaders, and I use words like epic, luv, sunny in my tummy. Only consistent readers understand the meaning behind this, and that’s what I intend. A tight community always excludes people.
Create a remarkable experience
Gaga’s crazy-vibrant videos and her epic live shows take the fan to a place where others only dream of being. She puts the most of her money into the creation of an experience that people won’t forget. Gaga is producing mind-magic, and captivates everyone who wants to join the ride. Wooosh!
Sad thing: Most bloggers don’t get this right: They simply share useful information, and shoot for the logical part of your brain. Just knowledge, no experience. Meh!
Remember, humans crave emotions more than anything else. If you only aim for the logical part of our brains, you will miss out – big time! But if you find a way to touch the emotional part, you may hit the jackpot. Ka-ching!
Jonathan Mead from the Illuminated Mind writes about living on your terms. He’s promoting an healthy, alternative lifestyle, and his blog shows it: The overall design is very earth-ish, and his product pages (coaching sessions) carry an Asian Yin-Yang flavor. Whenever I visit his blog, I feel like entering the temple of an old Kung-Fu master.
Good, now how do YOU create an experience that captivates your readers?
- Have a stunning design that’s unique, and let it convey the emotion you want to your readers to feel: Personal development? Make it bright, with warm colors. Vegan lifestyle? Go green all the way. Take your readers on a ride that you create.
- Show us your mission, over and over. Ash from The Middle Finger Project is all about being a rule breaker and smashing the status quo to bits and pieces. Her topics range from holidays to relationships, but you always feel that rebellious undertone – her main theme. No matter what you write about, always include your mission in your content. Humans love a purpose with a destiny – it’s emotianlly compelling.
- Go multimedia. An image is worth a thousand words. And video? Probably a million. A strong emotional bond is formed when we see the owner behind the blog. If you are presentable, give your readers a treat and put up a video once in a while. And when you talk, talk with passion! It will give your blog a strong personal flavor and touch the emotional part of your audience.
They may forget what you said, but they never forget how you made them feel.
Lady Gaga doesn’t know this, but she’s a perfect example for every aspiring problogger. It doesn’t matter that she’s in the music biz, the way she spreads her influence transcends media.
These are the golden nuggets that Gaga would share with you:
Invent a remarkable personal brand.
Excessively care about your community.
Deliver an experience that’s both valuable and emotional.
Achieve that and no one will read your po-po-poker face po-po-poker face.
What do you think?
Is it insane to connect Lady Gaga to blogging, or are there real lessons that we can learn from her?
photo by nellyfus
Editor’s note: Hey, Corbett here. I wanted to let you know about a new site that Think Traffic has been invited to contribute to. The Daily Brainstorm: A Blogazine to Rock Your Mind launches today, and we’re happy to be participating in the project along with 40+ other great blogs including Zen Habits, Problogger, The Happiness Project, White Hot Truth, Far Beyond the Stars, Ridiculously Extraordinary and many others. Head over and check it out for inspiration on living bigger, bolder and happier lives.