Everyone knows Paul McCartney. A member of the internationally famous singing group the The Beatles, McCartney is one of the most successful recording artists of all time, racking up 60 Gold Records over the years. It’s almost impossible to list all of McCartney’s achievements but there are a couple of Internet Marketing lessons we can learn from Sir James Paul McCartney, the rock and roll mega-star.
Identify your audience: The Beatles started out singing in small pubs in England, their audience consisting of teenagers who were ready for a new type of music. The reason The Beatles were able to rise so quickly is because their audience was open to their message.
Had The Beatles chosen a different venue for their music, they wouldn’t have had such a warm welcome. Their music didn’t appeal to the masses at all – only to the teenagers. And had they started even 2 or 3 years earlier, their audience would have had an entirely different mindset and who knows what we’d be listening to today.
Be true to yourself: Remember, The Beatles actually had a very small niche audience to begin with – teenagers who were ready for a new style of music. They were unwelcome in most every other circle. They could have changed their style of music to appeal to a larger audience, but that’s not what they wanted to do. Paul McCartney chose to follow his passion and let the audience find The Beatles. And as you know, it didn’t take long for the message to spread.
Create your brand: The Beatles were one of the first rock bands to actually turn themselves into a brand. Their hairstyles, their clothes, their music, and even the message within their music were all completely foreign to most of the world. Yet you could immediately recognize their music when you heard it, you could immediately identify The Beatles or one of their fans when you saw them, and you knew what message they were trying to convey.
Be bold and daring: One of the reasons The Beatles were so popular is because they were bold and daring. They didn’t back down to the pressure that was constantly surrounding them, trying to force them into some kind of a mold. They did exactly what they wanted to do and the negative uproar only made them that much more popular in the eyes of their admirers. In fact, their bravery attracted even more fans.
Expand your horizons: The Beatles started out in little out-of-the way pubs and taverns and it must have been quite a shock when the moved across the Pond. Their American debut on The Ed Sullivan Show was the first of many scary steps they had to take to promote their music. Moving to new venues, though, no matter how scary and unfamiliar the territory, helped them grow their audience.
Exploit all marketing opportunities: The Beatles were always ready to exploit any opportunity to promote the band. Even their impromptu get together at the top of the Apple Offices generated a buzz that was heard round the world. But the most famous opportunity, of course, was the rumor of Paul’s death.
If you’re old enough, you remember the rumor sweeping the country in the Fall of 1969 – Paul McCartney was dead. He’d died in a terrible auto accident and The Beatles were no more. It was like the shot heard round the world. Album sales soared and The Beatles became more popular than ever.
Of course, The Beatles and their entourage all denied the rumors and eventually they died down. However, periodically, the rumors start up, the conspiracy theorists start tossing around facts about backward recordings and Paul McCartney look-a-likes and guess what – record sales pick up again.
Now, whether or not the surviving members of The Beatles have anything to do with it is beside the point. The point is, anytime you find an opportunity to promote your brand you need to take it. And if you can’t find one, create it.
Here’s what you can learn from Paul McCartney about Internet Marketing:
Follow your passion – If you could choose to do anything you wanted for the rest of your life – without having to worry about money – what would it be?
Create your brand – What message do you want people to see when they first visit your site? What do you want to be known for?
Make an impact – The Beatles didn’t have the benefit of the Internet but you do. Use it to make an impact. It’s not enough to set up a site and expect your target audience to find you. Be brave, like the Beatles and reach out into the social networks, create videos, take the plunge and do some guest blogging.
But always stay true to yourself and your message. That’s what Paul would have done – if he had survived that horrible accident.
What do you think? Let me know in the comments below!