Apparently, today is Monty Python Day. I’m not sure why. I’m not sure who came up with this concept. However, I most heartily approve. I have had a post idea rolling around in my head, in fact, that incorporated Monty Python, and there seems like no better time than today to let that post free. Therefore, without further delay, allow me to present 15 bits of Social Media advice from Monty Python.
1. “Yes, we are all individuals!” “I’m not.” “Sssh.”
Go ahead and be that person who says they’re not an individual. Be the person who says, out of the crowd, “Well, I’m not different.” In other words, be yourself, as unique and fabulous as you are, even if the whole rest of the crowd seems to be on a separate path.
2. “I’m not dead. I feeeeel happy! I feeeel happy!!”
Stop consigning things to death. We’ve been doing that to death. I think I’ll go for a walk.
3. “We are now the knights who say, “icky icky shebanggggg (nee)”
Be careful not to contradict yourself or execute a significant change in your online persona. This also means that you need to track your content across multiple platforms. You don’t want to be the knights who said nee on Twitter and then turn into the knights who too recently said nee on Facebook, for example. There are people out there who are following you everywhere you go. Creepy, eh?
4. “She turned me into a newt once! … I got better.”
Do not gossip or make outrageous claims. Yes, it might get you some attention, but it might not be the kind of attention you want.
5. “Who leaps out of the rabbit?” “Eh, Sir Robin, Sir Galahad, and I…leap out of the…oh dear.”
Having a great plan is awesome, but it doesn’t mean much if you can’t implement it properly. Make sure that everyone in your organization knows what you are hoping to do, and then follow through to makes sure it gets done.
6. “And now for something completely different…..the larch.”
If you are saying that you are going to introduce something brand new, don’t end up presenting something that is ehm, how do you say, not new. Building people up only to disappoint them will not make you money or friends.
7. “Brothers, surely we should be fighting together!” “We are!” “No no, I mean against our common enemy!”
Do not look for online fights. It’s so unattractive, it only makes you look bad, and whatever you say is there for eternity. There are many better ways to spend your time anyway.
8. “Look! The juniper bush! It brought forth juniper berries!”
Do not allow yourself to be too easily “wowed” but what you see online. Respect and admiration are very different from idol worship. Nobody is flawless, no matter how much we’d like them to be.
9. “What is your favorite color?” “Blue. No yellooowwwwww ahhhhhh..”
We’ve talked about this a lot here. You can only find success in Social Media if you are true to yourself. No one else can sway you or destroy your online campaign if you know that you are doing what you need to do. Don’t confuse your motives and objectives with those of other people.
10. “King of the who??”
Unfortunately, success offline does not automatically mean you’ll be a success online, and the opposite also holds true. You need to do continue to do the work in all planes of existence, unfortunately. No shortcuts here!
11. “I told them we already got one!”
In Monty Python and the Holy Grail, the mischievous French knights tell Arthur and his loyal band that they already have a grail. Similarly, many people in Social Media will tell you that they have THE secret, THE way, THE answer. I’d be a bit more wary than Arthur was.
12. “No no no. You’re to stay here and make sure HE doesn’t leave!”
Sometimes the simplest statements can be misinterpreted – over and over again. Always try to make sure that you are being understood and that people can tell what your intent is. Even though it may seem obvious to you, it may be substantially less obvious to others.
13. “Half a dinari for me whole life story?!?” “There’s no pleasing some people.”
In the online world, it’s easy to give. Whether it’s help, analysis, a tweet here, a comment there, giving is just something we can incorporate into our daily routine. But there are people out there who ask you to give and are never satisfied. Your doing one favor means you are willing to do five more. Be careful how you handle those situations. You need to make sure you are tactful, but you also want to protect your own interests!
14. “One, two, five!” “Three, sir.”
Make sure you have the basics down before you head off into super advanced land. That may mean that you learn what all of the Twitter speak is before you try gathering a million new followers. It may mean honing your blog content before sending posts to the biggest sites in the industry. There will be time to do the more fun stuff, but you’ll never get there if you can’t count to five. I meant, three.
15. “This parrot has ceased to be!”
Finally, don’t sell things that aren’t true. This can mean all sorts of things in the world of Social Media. Don’t present a version of you that doesn’t really exist, for example. Don’t present a product that actually is something very different from what you promoted. And don’t try to fool your readers, your community, or your customers. That won’t get you anywhere.
So there you have it. Fifteen kernels of wisdom about Social Media from Monty Python. Do you have anything to add?
Image by Marina Avila. http://www.sxc.hu/profile/donzeladef