What is it about the number 12? Jesus had 12 Disciples, there are 12 hours in a day (unless you’re a marketer), the movie “The Dirty Dozen” had 12 members- I’m pretty sure – , there’s the 12 Days of Christmas, 12 inches in a foot, 12 Zodiac signs, and 12 people on a jury, Famous #Quarterbacks with #12 – Namath, Brady, Bradshaw,Kelly, Staubach, and Stabler, … and of course – 12 Step Programs.
Many say that the most important thing about a 12 Step Program is completing all the steps – all 12. Duh.
But today, this posting is sponsored by the number #11.
After hearing so much about the success of the original 12 Step Program from A.A. (…and the endless jokes about multi-step programs to solve all) , I decided to read the steps for myself – and have discovered that Step 11 – is the best explanation I’ve ever read of how to understand how social media and PR should work.
Step 11 (“Tradition 11” from 12Step.Org)
Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion; we need always maintain personal anonymity at the level of press, radio and films.
Our relations with the general public should be characterized by personal anonymity. We think A.A. ought to avoid sensational advertising. Our names and pictures as A.A. members ought not be broadcast, filmed or publicly printed. Our public relations should be guided by the principle of attraction rather than promotion. There is never need to praise ourselves. We feel it better to let our friends recommend us.
There it is:
“We feel it better to let our friends recommend us. ” (Emphasis added)
Further, from the first line,
“… Our public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion…”
Wow. Just Wow. Honestly, as a marketing leader I’ve understood the power of the recommendation – so expertly used by Amazon – and of course I’ve leveraged the power of a well crafted case study (video and written) – but the eloquence and simplicity of “Tradition 11” really resonates.
As many have noted- the power of Social Media is that it exponentially creates “friends” and like connections – and of course – there’s nothing more attractive than to have other people compliment us, either personally – or our products, services, and value. And the guidance that PR should be based on attraction versus promotion? Use the above explanation the next time someone in your organization insists on a press release promoting your new version 3.1459 – without a customer reference!
So, going forward – I’ll now use the precepts of “Step 11” to help clearly explain how Social Media and PR should be working!