The very danger in our new world of constant contact and self-publishing via social networking, blogging and the like is that we can get way too caught up in talking about something rather than doing something.
The darkest side of this black hole is what Steve Rubel has recently labeled “The Lazysphere.” If you’ve somehow missed this post, read it now. It’s true.
The lighter side of this chasm might be worse, because it doesn’t feel bad on the surface. In fact, it feels good. Using us marketers as the example, when you’re passionate about how things get done, it’s extremely easy to get caught up in talking about it rather than doing something about it.
If you don’t keep yourself in check, you become guilty of marketing “marketing,” and nothing else.
For many of us, a light bulb went off when we started reading Seth’s blog, and we stumbled across MarketingProfs, and we clicked around to find out that there were people out there who loved marketing and were fascinated with how it’s changing before our eyes.
Most importantly, we realized that blogs had opened doors for us to publish our thoughts on it all, while at the same time getting new ideas at a faster rate than ever before. It was nothing short of mesmerizing.
But the need for traffic and links and comments and trackbacks and, most of all, interaction from people who really have something to offer starts skewing what we do, making it all too easy to stop being marketers and start being commentators on the topic of marketing.
We become the armchair quarterbacks of marketing. But where are the skins on the wall?
It’s not just marketers. Bloggers blog about blogging. Preachers get wrapped up in preaching. Psychologists care more about how we think than what we think.
Here’s the point: If we get too enamoured with how marketing takes place without experiencing it first-hand, we’ll be out of touch and eventually irrelevant. The sad thing is that you probably won’t get called out for it, because most people can’t tell the difference (or they don’t have the balls to tell you).
Want a fresh perspective on marketing? Go do some of it. Otherwise, admit to yourself that you’re a sports talk radio host who talks about what the athletes are doing. It’s not a bad thing as long as you’re comfortable with knowing that. You have your hand on the pulse, but you have no effect on it. You are not the heartbeat.