Ryan Holiday is a best-selling author. He's also one of the most hated figures in the PR industry. He pulled back the curtain on the dark arts of the industry through revealing the tricks they use to control public opinion. Any marketer or PR person should put this at the top of their reading list.
Still not convinced?
This article is going to go into five of the lessons you can take away from Trust Me I'm Lying by Ryan Holiday.
Page View Kindness Can Make You Popular
Page view kindness is something Holiday touched upon in his book. The idea is that a site will post some breaking news. Thousands of others blogs will respond by writing the same content and linking their blog with the original. They're going to leech a lot of the page views from the original blog for doing little work.
Many sites will even repost the same or similar content, meaning they can have a competitor link up within minutes of the news breaking.
People are drawn in to these websites because they have high page views, and they're often used in pitches. Brands think they're dealing with reputable bloggers because of the page views. They don't dig any deeper than that. This is the sort of ego business leaders have. Big numbers win the day.
The Real News is All That Matters
The real news in journalism rarely makes the front page because people don't care. Companies are only interested in what will bring them the largest ad revenues and the most page views. They're perfectly willing to ignore valid stories just because they don't meet these criteria. It's why ethical journalism has fallen.
So what can you take away from this?
You already know that marketers that blog gain 67% more leads than those that don't. And that's because they're getting the page views and the ad revenues. They're doing this through only sticking with the popular issues. It's not about what's useful or what's beneficial. It's about what sells.
In short, choose your topic through what your revenue numbers say. It's what any public relations firm would recommend.
You are More Vulnerable Than You Think
In the book Holiday talks about Jeff Ritze. This is just one of the many fake profiles Holiday used to plant deceptive stories. The stories could be about an individual or a company. The point is this can leave brands with their reputations in tatters. They can be wiped out in a matter of weeks.
For you, this is something to keep in mind. A disgruntled customer or a former employee could very well spread lies about you online. This is why you have to track your online reputation. Make sure you get a PR firm to make sure your strategy is up to scratch.
This will help you to stop any damaging stories before they reach the public eye.
Make a Storm Out of the Smallest Thing
Holiday touches on this, but this is something you can quite easily see with the 2016 Presidential Elections. Everything you say is analyzed by someone. Say the wrong thing or say it in the wrong way and it can soon turn into a PR firestorm that can quickly engulf you.
This is where people start to have problems. But it's also something you can learn about to supply fresh new content for your readers. Look at one line or one point made in a popular blog and use that as the premise for a new piece of content. Gear it towards whatever you like and go from there. That's how growth hackers stop their brands from going stale.
Use Content That Isn't Yours
Sometimes you can get in the media just by feeding blogs the right content. Taking charge of blogs, sending posts to smaller blogs, and watching it multiply can increase your own notoriety. The thing is you're not actually doing anything black hat or anything that could get you a backlash from your target audience.
It's something all the big players in the media use. This is the sort of thing that can get you a lot of exposure in a short space of time, at no risk to you.
Holiday has pulled back the mask from the secretive PR industry. Marketing is all about manipulation, but that doesn't mean you have to stand idly by while it all happens. You can learn from it. These five lessons can be applied to your business in order to turn you into a success.
How are you going to improve your prospects today?