So I didn't even know there was a hashtag #wpdrama.
I started seeing these posts pop about the drama that goes on within the community and I was a little floored. Probably because I decided NOT to follow any specific WordPress hashtags (outside of #WordPress) a while ago. I saw a little bit of this when I followed #genesiswp and all it did was frustrate me.
And since I live by the motto, ‘I get to choose what I read, listen to or watch.' I decided I was done with this.
I will never understand why people choose to expend energy being nasty or rude. You're much more likely to get people to listen to you when you talk about what you're for as opposed to what you're against.
And here's the kicker.
People who get involved in any type of #onlinedrama are making a much bigger statement about themselves than what they're bitching about. Every time I see someone complain or bitch online I make a mental note to stay as far away as possible. Although I am amused by people who take a self-righteous, round-about approach to putting people down to make a point. It's painted with pleasantries and hashtags about #blessings and #gratitude (which are awesome hashtags by the way, but you know the type of posts I'm referring to).
Which brings me to the Cool Kids
I created a project about 5 years ago that included some ‘big names' in internet marketing (I'm leaving all details out because you don't want me to be one of those people who starts getting snarky but is grateful for the #lessonslearned).
I have taken to the very unfortunate habit of talking & writing in hashtags for emphasis and sarcasm. Hear my heart when I tell you that I think they're both fun and ridiculous at the same time (and definitely useful from a search perspective). And in case you haven't seen it, Jimmy Fallon and Justin Timberlake have done a hilarious skit on hashtags here.
Back to my project
The two most important business lessons for me in doing that project were:
1) I was not going to have an “online persona” that was different than who I am in my personal life
2) I was going to share the good AND the bad.
Something I've noticed about what I call “old school” Internet marketers is that they rarely share anyone else's stuff. Most of their posts are “enough about me, what do you think about me?”
Every now and then we get a personal update but it's usually about how wonderful their life is. Which is FINE.
But no one's life is wonderful ALL the time, right? Do I want to see people being miserable? Of course not, but share the challenges and struggles as well as the new cars and trips.
People want to relate to you. Talk with them, not at them.
And here's where the magic really starts to happen.
You have a GLOBAL AUDIENCE to connect with.
Stop chasing the cool kids or perceived influencers. Love their content? Great! Subscribe and engage, but don't stop with them.
There are so many people you can connect with online who are not only doing amazing things but are kick ass people too. Step outside of your comfort zone and reach out.
Make a connection.
Join a Facebook group where you can connect and engage with people you don't know (something I need to do more of myself).
You never know where the connection will lead you – an incredible new friendship or a profitable business venture. Maybe both, but you don't know unless you try.
As a quick example, let’s look at Facebook.
There are a handful of Facebook marketers whose names I could list here that many of you have probably heard of. My guess is that there are probably ten times that number of people whose names you don't know but are killing it on Facebook (and probably doing better financially than some of the ‘cool kids').
My point with using Facebook as an example is that there are SO many people who can teach you Facebook marketing (and if you want to be flooded with Facebook marketing experts, login to Facebook then open a new tab in Google and search for Facebook marketers. It won't take long for your newsfeed to be flooded with opportunities. You gotta love retargeting).
Regardless of the people you choose to follow, hire or buy from, make the decision that's right for you.
You've got this.