So it’s no longer just 60s-era advertising or crime scene investigations where TV is getting material from. The good old tube is also picking up concepts from new avenues and technologies: social media.
After landing a book deal, the popular and witty Twitter serial @ShitMyDadSays was recently picked up by CBS, which intends to produce a half-hour family comedy series based on the content of the phenomenally successful social media meme. The Twitter account is authored by Justin Halpern, who quotes his own 73-year-old father’s sometimes profane, sometimes cranky, and always funny quips and off-the-cuffs. David Kohan and Max Mutchnick – creators of Will & Grace – are reported to be executive producing the show, which Halpern will co-write with Patrick Schumacker.
Internet and social media marketers will have a thing or two to learn from Halpern – and it’s not necessarily that comedy sells better than promotions speak. It is Halpern’s creation of focused, in-demand, and consistently creative content that marketers and communicators alike can learn a lot from. No, we don’t have to write lines of sitcom to sell products and services or successfully propagate ideas, but – like Halpern – we can:
Find a unique, relevant position
@ShitMyDadSays is curse-laden humor, but it is curse-laden humor with lots of fans and followers. How can we do it like Halpern? The key is to find a unique voice that audiences will listen to and would want to continue listening to. More than just another company or just another Tweeting marketer, audiences are looking for a personality, one that is authentic, one that can connect, converse, and engage online communities.
Halpern, who has almost a million followers on Twitter, first got people to read his Tweets via mere word-of-mouth. He stayed on course, quoted his father faithfully and exclusively, and never veered off his own concept by talking about unrelated matters or sanitizing his father’s words. @ShitMyDadSays is a lesson in staying focused: once you find your voice, don’t borrow or imitate someone else’s. Don’t do it just because everybody seems to be doing it. Be unique and stay that way. Audiences will love you if you have more to say – or, to be more precise, something else to say other than “50% off” or “Click this and get a free discount!”
Recognize the value of great content:
Some marketers think they can get away just because they leverage great new tools, or use great colorful design. But content should be the bait that hooks the fish. The value of well-written, strategic, creative, and engaging content should never be underrated when implementing a campaign. Look at @ShitMyDadSays. Without the fans and followers, there’d be no press, no book, and no TV deal. But without the great, unique content, there’d be no fans and followers.