Is The Passion Descriptor Overdone?

French Fries

French Fries (Photo credit: fritish)

People are throwing around the word passion like it’s salt on French fries. It’s becoming a very popular word to describe spirited energy and excitement about something — whether it’s business, facing the day, or doing PR, for example.

I consider myself a passionate person in a number of ways — I have an incredible passion for blogging; I write with a voice that is WSYWIG — people are surprised to Skype for the first time and see that I am how I write.

I am passionate about public relations. It angers me when my peers get short shrift in our profession because others don’t understand how or what we do.

Having a passion for various aspects of life are also part of the total package. Does that mean people with passion are born with it, or can it be taught? Does passion come with maturity and a few years under the belt? Is it all about experiences others don’t have?

Marketers try to tap the passion about their products when writing copy or with storytelling. I get that…people need to tap inner emotion to bring out the pocketbook and build loyalty and evangelism.

What I hope doesn’t happen, though, is that the word passion becomes boring. People with instinctual passion for their approach to life bring a zeal others strive for.

If passion becomes mundane, then we who have that inner light naturally will need to use another word to describe our zest for life.

What’s your definition of passion? Do you think it can be taught? Is it something innate or does it ripen with time and seasoned expertise? Do you think passion is being thrown around like salt on French fries?

This is one of those blog posts where I’m just thinking and don’t have the answer; maybe you do.

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Observations and Ponderings in Marketing Public Relations

Sometimes the trivia and inanity pile up. Here are some observations I need to share. Anything goes — marketing, public relations, social media, and just plain old stuff. What can you add?

  • “Tectonic shift” is the new popular, overdone phrase. Where was the last place you read it?
  • Who is using mobile apps enough to warrant the price tag to develop and market them? Mashable says there are some 200,000+ mobile apps.  Kinda hard to find the exact data, but this story provides some healthy competitive info from Apple v. Android.
  • Are there any law firms developing mobile applications? I’d like to know!
  • Do the unemployed consist of people truly seeking work or waiting for the next government extension because the job market stinks?
  • Will alternative fee arrangements hit public relations firms just as it is doing in law firms?
  • Who understands health care reform well?
  • Yesterday’s Wall Street Journal had a typo in a sub-headline “plan vanilla” versus “plain vanilla,” and then it also spelled button as “buttom.”  Now the latter is not a word, and spell check ought to have caught that, right?
  • Social media automaters are hot and vying for business. The prey – SMBs in need of social media assistance to leverage new media for new revenue streams.
  • September 27, 2010 is the Advertising Age Media 2011 issue. It will explore all the channels and complicated distribution of content. It will address how agencies and media are struggling as companies and marketers aggregate their own audiences.
  • Love the UK campaign by Damian Barr, a journalist and cultural entrepreneur, who engaged with Volvo to park 25 Volvos at the Starlite Urban Drive-In in London. Tickets at $40 each sold out in 30 seconds online for showings of “Grease” and “Dirty Dancing.” If that’s not lifestyle marketing, behavioral/emotional marketing and public relations, what is??!

Blogger’s Reflection

Today’s post is much about balance and harmony – finding that Holy Grail of work/life balance that feels so unattainable. The news does nothing for that – Greece, oil and environment, terrorism plots foiled and more coming, financial reform, Congressional fighting, product safety, health fears and obesity, greed and need of money, taxes and audits.

And, then, there’s the blogosphere. I’m new; this is my 45th post. I’m a mere babe still trying to find a voice and perfect a direction and target audience.

Blogging is thrilling, pressurized, heady, demoralizing, and a confidence boost or confidence bother. It’s exactly what you make it, how you regard it, and how you address the emotions that come with it and people who insert their opinions.

Those whom you’ll meet on the path may love what you say, disagree wholeheartedly, perplex you with a comment, suggest foolishness to content or writing style, and pressure you to think outside the box.  It’s what makes blogging real, and pushes you to improve with every post. 

Reading others’ blogs religiously may be a blogger’s biggest idea killer. Keeping up with the Jones’s and developing a topic that resonates with everyone is impossible. Writing style either nods heads or provokes consternation. Content ticks someone off, or pushes someone to tell a story of their own in agreement.

Here are more of my Blogging 101 tips to add to those I developed early on:

  • Select a topic that jazzes you, not one that everyone else is writing about that day or week.
  • Regard comments as enrichments to the conversation; consider these perspectives as fodder for thought, further content, an opportunity to stick to your guns or alter your own opinion.
  • Be of healthy mind when opening yourself to the world.  Comments can get under your skin and raise doubt or make you soar with the excitement of the post (I loved the Nestle and Greenpeace posts).
  • Be wary of those who seek to dismantle your inner serenity and sense of self but be open to the perspectives that push thinking to a higher plateau.
  • Take a day off; no one is asking for 7-days a week of posts. Find your own healthy rhythm, and when it feels like a chore, take a closer look at from where those emotions are coming.

Attaining 100 percent compatibility with the world is unattainable; if that’s anyone’s blogging goal then find another way to express yourself.

Thinking Social Media

Danny Brown’s blog post April 27 “Are you a shadow or beacon?” was my first ponder of the day yesterday. His reflective content and imagery was about choosing a social media path of leader rather than follower.

Through the day, I RT’ed  a Danny tweet, and then clicked on a link he thought important enough to RT. I was directed to Social Media Today; lo, a Danny Brown comment just ahead of mine.

It sure felt like I was Danny’s shadow yesterday, and I don’t always mind. There are leaders in social media I appreciate rubbing shoulders with as I’ve a long way to go to reach that echelon; or do I?

Mack Collier posted at Social Media Today “Want to be a social media expert? Break stuff.” With his 2500+ views and 76 tweets (at the time of this writing), he encourages social media is still new, the “rules” are meant to be broken to see what works and what doesn’t. Mastery, says Mack, is inconceivable (paraphrasing here); “when you think you’ve got it mastered, mix things up.”

According to Mack, I might be an expert already. In the name of social media:

  • I’ve broken the Headway WordPress theme (my blogging nightmare).
  • I lost a domain name once and had to pay exorbitantly to buy it back.
  • I uploaded some php files onto my shared server only to forget which are active and which ought to be deleted.

My actions yesterday bumping in to Danny Brown position me as somewhat of a follower, but not by design; Mack Collier’s post suggests I’m a jack of all trades and master of none. (That’s why I’m in public relations — blending social media with traditional public relations and marketing to positively influence business strategy — so I get to know a little about a lot.)

My attempt here is to bridge two musings, both apropos, that offer thoughts on social media engagement, leadership and mastery. Is it necessary to affix a label and define oneself? I believe human nature drives us there; case in point — the objective statement on your very own resume.

Maybe you can provide a deeper dive from your own experiences and help me spring this conversation loose?  There’s a germ of something here, I tell you.

Irony of Dirt, Circles and Perhaps Social Media

Sweeping the garage and emptying the dryer lint trap got me thinking again about the irony of dirt (work with me here) because blogging makes me listen and think differently.

Dirt and circles are constants in our lives (can I draw a correlation to social media?). Let me share how:

  • What you sweep outside rolls back in to be re-swept.
  • The lint you empty flies through air to land again inside.
  • “Everything comes full circle.”
  • “Spheres of influence,” and “What goes around, comes around.”
  • “Let’s circle back and re-visit that one again.”
  • “What’s old is new again.”

Here’s the jump…

The center of the circle in which we in marketing public relations and integrated online and social media are functioning includes daily scurry to learn the latest trend, use it and differentiate. It includes our need to learn and be leaders for those audiences expecting that expertise.

On the outskirts of the circle, however, are clients, colleagues, peers, and end users who are not on board, are confused, and cannot make the jump to the center to ride the wave with us.

Circle back, people. Re-introduce what’s old and make it new again. Dust off campaigns of yore that are familiar and add a social media inside to sweeten the deal. Ensure that basics are included in client deliverables so that all tactics blend.

Not all dirt is dirty. Dig deep into your sphere of influence and make what’s old new again.