Build your own audience-don’t wait to be picked

I have no doubt that my colleagues who frequently appear in the media-on radio or TV or quoted in the newspapers-are immensely grateful for the exposure. There is no doubt it creates a great deal of credibility around them and their expertise.

That cannot do any harm, especially if their target market is likely to be listening to ‘mainstream media’.

But there is a price to pay, too.

The first big problem I have with it is you are relying on someone in authority (or the media) to ‘pick’ you. There is still a gatekeeper and if you accept the invitations, you accept this as part of the game.

The second big problem I would have is the amount of time required to prepare and be available for such interviews, even if they are only be video or phone call. The call or interview is at a time dictated by the media organisation and the interviewee will have little or no input to the time, or duration.

For these reasons I believe it is a tremendously more effective business strategy to build your own audience, whether on YouTube or Facebook or Instagram or on a podcasting platform or email. Building your own audience means you set the terms of engagement: the when, the where, the frequency, the what.

And the most compelling reason for adopting this strategy? You don’t have to wait to be picked. There are no gatekeepers or, if there is one, you are it.

Any small business owner or start up or entrepreneurial individual who is not building his/her own audience online is making a grave mistake.

If you learn nothing else from the Trump circus and its exploitation of Facebook and Twitter over the last few years never forget that Trump and his followers cared not a jot for mainstream media. They built their own crowd.

You can too.

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