Opening acts and rock stars
The opening act has the toughest gig in town. The audience isn't here to listen to you. They're restless. Perhaps you'll get a few seconds to earn their attention, but not much. Your gimmicks will fall flat and you might even get booed off stage.
The rock star, on the other hand, has the crowd chanting for him before he shows up. He starts a song and people applaud. They sing along. They finish his lyrics for him.
Most marketers are opening acts. The ad or blog post or tweet is a desperate attempt at attention, at keeping people from switching it off or booing. The posture of the marketer who is an opening act is unstable and a little sad.
Some marketers are rock stars.
How'd that happen?
I'd argue that the two keys to becoming a rock star marketer are:
1. settle for a tiny audience that views you as a star, not an opening act. Then grow that audience.
2. Be really good.
I just went to see Keller Williams in concert. Without a doubt, he's a genius and a rock star. If he tried to pull this stuff as an opening act for someone else, he'd be booed off the stage. But he doesn't. Because he's a rock star. If he was selling something, I'd buy it.