Non-Obvious 2019 Trends for Social Media and Beyond

Non-Obvious 2019 Trends for Social Media and Beyond

Rohit Bhargava, Founder and Chief Trend Curator of Non-Obvious Company, returns to the Social Pros Podcast to discuss 2019’s non-obvious trends for social media.

In This Episode:

Rohit Bhargava

Influential Marketing Group

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Full Episode Details

Finding the Trends

Just as in fashion, music, or pop culture, every year brings with it a new set of trends for social media. This happens on both the consumer’s side of things as well as on the marketer’s.

Trends often seem like they happen overnight, but in reality, there is a bit of a buildup. Spotting a trend and understanding it before it becomes obvious is the key to staying ahead of the game when it comes to social media. Not every trend and strategy is effective for every business, however, so being secure in who you are as a brand is crucial when analyzing trends for social media.

By keeping a firm grasp on your brand values while also having a willingness to adapt to an ever-changing landscape, you can set yourself apart from the competition and ensure that you’re spending your time and budget in the most effective way possible.

In This Episode

  • 05:41 – Why “muddled masculinity” is one of the “non-obvious” trends for 2019.
  • 08:52 – How “innovation envy” can lead businesses to make unnecessary changes for the sake of standing out.
  • 10:51 – Why not all businesses benefit from creating a spectacle.
  • 17:17 – How to market your small business successfully on a small budget.
  • 20:21 – How to “deliberately downgrade” your social media to become more effective in certain areas.

Quotes From This Episode

Coming in and saying, 'This is the way it is,' without having earned the right to do that always backfires in social media. Click To Tweet

“Some brands are just wasting their money because they’re just doing something viral, but it isn’t generating any word of mouth.” — @rohitbhargava

“There’s a strategic way to use social platforms. The temptation for business owners is to do everything on every platform.” — @rohitbhargava

Resources

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Episode Transcript

Jay Baer: 00:00 I'll tell you what, Adam Brown, I couldn't agree more with our special guest this week. His perspective on the one, two, three different ways you can use social media. Adam Brown: 00:09 Yeah, I agree with you. What a great show. Rohit is such a smart person. Every year, it sounds like ... This is our third time with Ro, on the show. Jay Baer: 00:17 Third year in a row. There's only three things that happen every year. The swallows come back to San Juan Capistrano, the Patriots are in the Super Bowl, and Rohit Bhargava is on Social Pros. Those three things happen every single year. Adam Brown: 00:31 That's right. That's right. Some of these are more preferable than others. Not that I'm saying anything about that. But you're exactly right. Every year, Ro shares with us his insights around trends with his Non-Obvious book, and he also talks a lot about his new book, about how small business owners and small business marketers can do their job, and do their thing without a big budget. I love, Jay, how he takes some of his trends, and what he sees in new technology and innovations, and rolls those into the suggestions, in this case for small business marketers. Jay Baer: 01:06 Absolutely. He is such a brilliant individual. What I like about Rohit is not only is he super smart, but he's exceedingly practical. You don't usually see that Venn diagram very often. People are usually really smart and less practical, or really practical but not really much of a visionary, and he's both. You're gonna enjoy this episode as you probably do every year if you're a longtime listener. But speaking of trends, I want you to tell the kids at home, our amazing listeners at Social Pros about the new Salesforce State of Marketing Report, 'cause it's a humdinger. Adam Brown: 01:39 It is, and that was a great segue by the way. Jay Baer: 01:41 Thank you. Thanks very much. Adam Brown: 01:42 Plus one there. But you're exactly right. December of this year, we came out with our fifth annual State of Marketing Report. This is something that our Salesforce research group comes through with. This year we interviewed 4,100 senior marketers, communicators, social professionals at companies and organizations, small and large. What we do is every year we map up and map out what they're ... Speaking of Venn diagrams, what are they doing well, what are they needing assistance with, and where are they being successful? We grade each of these 4,100 executives and their companies as being high-performing or low-performing. It's so interesting, Jay. What this study shares with its readers is some of the things that the high-performing organizations are doing, especially around social media. Social media was such an integral part of this year's research report. Jay Baer: 02:34 Yeah. You're not gonna find more comprehensive research. I mean, 4,100 marketers surveyed is pretty spectacular. It is really, really good. If you've not had a chance to download it, do it as soon as we're done with this episode. You can get it easily at bit.ly/jaysays. Bit.ly/jaysays, J-A-Y-S-A-Y-S, all lowercase. It'll take you right to the report. Download it. You're gonna love it. Also, last week on the show if you listened, we had Mr. Andy Sernovitz, who is the head of socialmedia.org. One of our amazing benefactors on Social Pros this year. Socialmedia.org is simply the best organization for big company social media managers to help solve common problems, get support, get counsel. Adam, you've been in the organization twice, once when you were at Dell, once when you were at Coca-Cola. It is the best place to be if you are doing this for a big brand. Adam Brown: 03:27 It is. Listeners of our show have heard me talk about. I can remember one time that I was leading social at Coca-Cola, and the Federal Trade Commission had just come out with its first standards for social media, and disclosures, and things like that. It was something that I think most everyone in the marketing and social media industries accepted, but we had to realize how are we were going to apply this? How are we actually going to execute this? I think it was because of socialmedia.org, and the ability to go onto the forums, and in real-time talk to colleagues at other companies, and have that resource that helped us solve that and get ahead of that, and be able to execute that. That's just one of many, many, many opportunities and experiences that socialmedia.org members have every day. Jay Baer: 04:15 If you're running social on a big brand, we suggest that you apply. They have a pretty sophisticated screening process, but at least give it a shot. Go to socialmedia.org/socialpros. Socialmedia.org/socialpros to give that a shot, and we hope you get in. If you haven't listened to our show with Andy from last week, do that. You'll love that episode as well. Without further ado, please put your ears on this one. It is Social Pros with Rohit Bhargava. Rohit Bhargava, who is the author of not just one, but two new books too, talk about an over achiever. Adam Brown: 04:57 I'll tell ya. Jay Baer: 04:58 He's crazy. His new book, Non-Obvious 2019 Edition: How To Predict Trends and Win The Future is available now. Brand new, minutes ago seemingly, another new book from Rohit, The Non-Obvious Guide To Small Business Marketing (Without A Big Budget). Man, this guy is knocking out books like it's nobody's business. He's also, as I recall, the third time he's been on this show. Rohit, welcome back to the Social Pros Podcast. Rohit Bhargava: 05:28 Thank you. Three timer club. I'm very honored. Jay Baer: 05:31 The smoking robe will be delivered to your home in just a couple of days, like the five timer club on SNL. Adam Brown: 05:38 And a home version of the [inaudible 00:05:40]. Rohit Bhargava: 05:39 It has already. Jay Baer: 05:41 Oh, nice. Perfect. Perfect. Slippers too. Tell us, let's talk about trends first, and we'll talk about small business in a minute. Adam and I were talking about this before you jumped on the air with us, and I'm sure you had to answer this question in the last few days. As we're recording this, the big kerfuffle about Gillette's television commercial and taking men to task for being inappropriate, etc., has created a lot of chatter. One of your trends in the book is muddled masculinity. You wrote the book before the Gillette thing came out. That is amazing. That is some crystal ball action. Tell me that story. Rohit Bhargava: 06:20 Yeah, that was me reflecting on the fact that ... As you know, I do this report every year. Every year there's 15 new trends. For the past several years, there's been a bunch of trends around female empowerment, there was one that we called fierce femininity, and then last year there was a trend that we had researched called un-gendered, which was about this idea that gender, it matters less than it has in the past. This year, we turned it around and said, "Well, let's focus on masculinity." I tried really hard to have this one lens of masculinity to say, "Hey, it's like men are becoming more in touch with their emotions. That's one thing that's happening. But then men are reevaluating their place in society," and there was just so much going on that the trend eventually became something we called muddled masculinity, because the questions marks are the trend themself. Like this idea that being a man today is forcing us to question what's going on, and think about our role in culture, our role in society, and who we want to be. For me, as a dad of two boys, thinking about what do we want our sons to be too. Adam Brown: 07:33 I think it's such an important topic. Like you, I've got a seven year old boy, and talking about this subject is important. The other piece of this is, and I know Jay can probably speak to this too, is we go to conferences and conventions. Over the past couple weeks, everybody's been talking about this campaign. The question I would have for you, Rohit, is from where you sit, your vantage point. What advice and counsel would you give to companies after your piece of what you wrote, and now also seeing the reaction to the Gillette ads? Rohit Bhargava: 08:07 It's one of the hardest things to do when you're writing about something like a trend, and offering a point of view is to become comfortable with the point of view being a question instead of an answer. I think that a lot of times what brands in particular will try and do is they'll try and say, "Look, our point of view is this is the answer." They walk in and they say, "Let me give you the answer." I think that's part of what got Gillette into trouble, that people wanted a message about this. They maybe didn't necessarily want it from them, but this is a topic that people have been thinking about. But someone coming in and saying, "This is the way it is," without having earned the right to do that always backfires in social media. Jay Baer: 08:52 Yeah. Isn't that the truth. Speaking of backfiring in social media, one of your other trends for 2019, again our guest this week is Rohit Bhargava who writes a series every year, publishes a brand new book each January 1st called The Non-Obvious Trends For The Year, 15 new trends each year, and one of your trends this year, Ro, was innovation envy. That innovation for innovation-sake, and everybody feels like [inaudible 00:09:17] way to be is to be an innovator. I think that's symptomatic and an issue in social as well, right? We're always searching for the next thing like, "Facebook's not working very well, you need to get yourself some Snapchat. Snapchat's not working so well, you need to get yourself some Instagram Stories," or whatever the circumstances are. Do you see that as well, that kind of merry-go-round effect? Rohit Bhargava: 09:39 Yeah, absolutely. It's funny that a lot times we write about something and then you see examples of this afterwards. It was funny 'cause I think just this week in Wired, I saw an article about the backlash that's been growing against the open-plan office, and this whole idea that we used to think, "This is great. Everybody's on the same level. There's no more doors on offices anymore, and ping pong tables are great." Then all of a sudden people realized that it's distracting to have all these people walking around, and doing all this stuff, and we're not Google, and we shouldn't try and be Google. The innovation envy trend was so interesting because there's so many symptoms of it. A company running towards trying to create a hackathon. If you ask them, "Why are you doing a hackathon?" Say, "Well, everybody else is doing one, so we should just do one too." One of the things I love when I put together these trends, and when I'm writing them is putting two words that don't seem like they go together, together. In this case, innovation, which is something everyone wants, and envy, which is something nobody wants. Putting those together seemed like an interesting way of describing what I saw happening in the world. Jay Baer: 10:51 One thing that's interesting [inaudible 00:10:52], and I read that same article about open-plan offices. Hilarious, right? It became all the rage, and then like, "Oh, maybe this is not a good idea at all." It's one of the things that you talked about a little bit is strategic spectacle, one of your other trends for the year, and this idea that let's just do something wild so we can get a earned attention. That paid attention is expensive, owned attention is also difficult. Certainly shared attention through social is having its own set of challenges. Maybe if we can do some sort of a stunt that will go "viral", that that's [inaudible 00:11:28]. I don't think that's a very good strategy. I wrote a whole book recently called Talk Triggers about having a word of mouth strategy, instead of a viral strategy. What do you think about strategic spectacle, is this idea of trying to break through by being disproportionately wild, is that actually a strategy? Or is it just a trend that is going to pass like open-offices? Rohit Bhargava: 11:50 It is interesting that you put something like spectacle, which by its very nature is a fleeting viral thing, like you said. If you try and think about being strategic with it, you're right to raise the question of, look, is that even possible? Nobody wants to create a spectacle 'cause it feels like a negative thing, but being spectacular, of course, we all want to be that. I do think that you can create something that generates a lot of attention in short period of time. Look, we're almost coming up to the Super Bowl. That's a great moment in time where a lot of people are trying to create a strategic spectacle. The idea being that hopefully that spectacle will generate enough awareness that people will then start saying, "Oh, you know what, I need to get some of that." I think that some brands are able to take that and generate that awareness that then convinces people that they should check it out later. Some brands are just wasting their money because they're just, like you said, doing something viral, but it's not actually in your terminology from your awesome book, it's not a talk trigger. It doesn't create any word of mouth. Adam Brown: 13:04 Rohit, I'm curious if ... To take Jay's point about the spectacle. If different spectacles work with different generations of people, I know as one of your other jobs, you're a Professor of Marketing at Georgetown University. You mentioned you have two kids, so you're around a lot of young people. One of the things that I think a lot of us, maybe even older marketers try to do is we try to get our finger on that zeitgeist, that finger on that pulse of the younger person. Do you find that their aspects and that their trends that seem to be resonating more with younger, from college age and younger, than the older demographics? Any huge discrepancies that you see? Rohit Bhargava: 13:45 Yeah. I do think there is certainly generational discrepancies. You're right. One of the trends that I wrote about was something I called side quirks, and it was related to this idea that I think a lot of us have heard of the side hustle, and this sense of even though you have a job and you're doing whatever you're doing for your job, you need something on the side. What's interesting is in the younger generation, that is a default position. Everybody has some sort of side hustle, and in fact, more and more of them are seeing themself as being the sort of person that could turn that side hustle into something that they spend most of their time on. Whereas you look at the older generation, people who grew up in a different time, and who are now in their 50s and 60s, they're also exploring their side quirks and their side hustles. But for them, it was never something they could on the side while they had their career. For them it's like, "Okay, I'm done with my career, now I'm gonna retire and spend time on my side hustle, and spend time on my side quirk, on my thing, because that was the thing I always wanted to do, but never could have done for work." Adam Brown: 14:53 Well, a perfect segue, I think, into our next topic. So often times, I think the side hustle turns into an entrepreneurial opportunity. The title of your other book that has literally just been released in the couple of days is The Non-Obvious Guide To Small Business Marketing (Without A Big Budget). Fascinating topic. Again, so appropriate I think in this time and age. How did you get the idea to focus on that small business owner and the small business? In many cases, that small business owner is having to wear all the hats, which includes marketing. Again, they don't have the big hustle budget, they have the small hustle budget. How did you come up with the idea for the book? Rohit Bhargava: 15:37 Yeah, for me, I spent most of my career in marketing. I was always working with a big budget that was not mine, it was somebody else's money to spend 'cause I was an agency guy. Then I started my own business, and I became a small business owner, and I started thinking differently about whether I'm going to spend money on certain things, and whether I'm not. This idea came about because I've been ... For the last almost 10 years now, I've become the Non-Obvious guy. I do this book every year. It's a brand. We went off and trademarked it, and did all that stuff. But we wanted to make it broader, and I was looking at just this idea that people want how-to advice. Right now, the place they turn is a Dummy's Guide, or an Idiot's Guide. The problem with those is that they're so fluffed up. I picked up, for example, The Dummy's Guide To Digital Marketing. There's literally five pages explaining what the internet is. Who needs that? That's such a waste. The idea of the Non-Obvious Guides was can we write them in a tone of voice that's like having coffee with an expert? That's the tagline. These are meant to be like having coffee with an expert, and then the small businesses marketing guide is just the first of many coming from different authors. We're gonna have probably 10 this year, hopefully even more next year on all sorts of topics, so event planning, employee engagement, understanding blockchain. There's some great, great topics there. For me, I just wanted to create a how-to guide, and take everything that I had learned about marketing on every level, and try and put it into a single useful, bullet point style book. Adam Brown: 17:17 I think, Ro, with your answer just there, you almost answered my next question, and that is, you are the Non-Obvious guy, you are the trend-meister, if you will. Does being a shrewd small business marketer without a big budget here in 2019 mean you're doing the simple, more traditional stuff really well? Or is it being able to use, and leverage, and benefit from these new trends, and these new innovations? Where is that balance of doing the simple stuff, versus the new innovative crafty sharp stuff? Rohit Bhargava: 17:55 I think if there's one message from this, it's something that I think Jay alluded to earlier, which is the smartest small business marketing strategy is a strategy, not a tactic. A lot of times what you find many small business owners who are not marketing professionals will do is they'll latch onto a tactic and say, "Okay, now I need to just amp up my Facebook page, and that's all I'm gonna focus on." One of the things that I try and share in the book is there's a strategic way to use these platforms. For example, there's probably three ways that you can use any social media platform. Way number one is a parking lot, which is you register your brand name, and then you just say, "Look, I'm not updating my Twitter account because I don't use Twitter that much, so visit me over here." It's literally just a redirect, but at least you own the name. The second is to use it to gain understanding about your audience. Maybe you're not actively posting, but you're listening. You're using it to gain insight. The third is to actually engage people, to actually post stuff and to post content. I think that the temptation for not just small business owners, but everybody is to do everything on every platform. Not all of us can be as prolific as Jay. We can't all be posting stuff all the time. We don't have the personality for it, or we don't have the drive and the passion for it. Part of the challenge is ... You guys will appreciate this. I started a Twitter account back maybe five years ago for a book that I had written. It was not my Twitter account for me, it was my Twitter account for the book, and I was tweeting as if I were the book. Then six months later, and I was done doing that. Now I've got this other Twitter account, and it's this traditional problem of am I gonna keep up two Twitter accounts? I did one post on that Twitter account, and I actually tell this story in the book. That one post said, "Hey, thanks for following me. I'm not actively updating this anymore. Why doing you follow Rohit Bhargava over here on Twitter 'cause he tweets a lot more than I do. Clearly, he has more time." It was like this parking lot thing that said, "Hey, I'm not updating this anymore, it's done. Go over here." Adam Brown: 20:10 The old detour sign. Rohit Bhargava: 20:12 Yeah. Yeah. I think a lot of times we're afraid to do that. It feels like this, "Oh man, I started this Twitter account, and now I've got to keep it going forever." Jay Baer: 20:21 It's funny, that's one of your trends in this year's trend book, is deliberate downgrading. It feels like that's what you have done with your Twitter account, you have downgraded it deliberately, and turned it from a way to use social number three, into a way to use social number one. Rohit Bhargava: 20:39 Yeah. It's fascinating for me to think this, but I started blogging in 2004. It's been 15 years now that I've been blogging. A couple years ago, I stopped taking comments on any of my blog posts. I just removed the commenting [inaudible 00:20:55]. Jay Baer: 20:54 Me too. Rohit Bhargava: 20:55 Yeah, because I wasn't finding any value from it. If you had asked me back in 2004, I would have told you the most important thing about social media is conversation, and what kind of a person wouldn't allow comments on their blog? Here we are, more than a decade later saying, "You know what, conversation is good, but people posting stupid crap is ... I'm not the arbiter of that. I don't need to create a place for people to be stupid." Jay Baer: 21:23 Know those conversations happen in other places. It happens on LinkedIn, and it happens on Facebook. They still happen, they just are now in a different venue, in some cases. Yeah, you have to ... What we always say as a company that does a lot of social media strategy, Adam as well, is if you have a strategy that is more than 500 days old, you don't actually have a strategy, you just think that you do. I think blog comments is just one proof point for that kind of thinking. You have to keep evolving, and that's one of the reasons why your commitment to creating books in series is so brilliant. The Non-Obvious Guide comes out every January 1st, 15 new trends, [inaudible 00:22:00] this year. You absolutely need to buy it ladies and gentlemen, Non-Obvious 2019, available on all the places [inaudible 00:22:05] the book can be procured. Now the new series about all kinds of other marketing and business stuff from the Non-Obvious Company. I cannot wait to see where all those go. I think you need a Non-Obvious Guide To Podcasting by myself and Adam Brown. Rohit Bhargava: 22:22 You have a open invite, whenever you want, my friend. Jay Baer: 22:25 Thanks. We appreciate that. Rohit Bhargava: 22:26 I think you [inaudible 00:22:26] lot of readers for that, for sure. Adam Brown: 22:28 Thank you. We'll see what we can do. Jay Baer: 22:30 Non-Obvious Guide To Working For Salesforce from Adam ... Adam Brown: 22:32 Mm, there you go. Jay Baer: 22:34 It's a big company. It's probably a large enough addressable market to sell those books. Adam Brown: 22:39 [inaudible 00:22:39] that's true. Rohit Bhargava: 22:40 I'm gonna give you sneak peek at my next one, which I haven't even announced yet, which I'm super excited about. Jay Baer: 22:45 Oh, okay. Adam Brown: 22:45 Right here on the show today. Jay Baer: 22:47 [inaudible 00:22:47]. Go ahead. Rohit Bhargava: 22:47 Show today, sneak preview. It's gonna be The Non-Obvious Guide To Traveling For Work. It's gonna be all about being a road warrior. Adam Brown: 22:55 Nice. Rohit Bhargava: 22:55 And everything that we know from having done this about optimizing the experience, and getting the upgrade, and maximizing your points, all the way through to just lifestyle stuff. How do you survive on the road? Adam Brown: 23:08 So Great. Jay Baer: 23:09 Are you writing that one, or you're getting somebody doing it for you? Rohit Bhargava: 23:11 Yeah. I mean, actively we go out and interview people who I know are on the road all the time. You'll be getting a call from me. Jay Baer: 23:18 Yeah. Can we do the Non-Obvious Guide To Weird Shit I've Seen In Airports? 'Cause I can definitely fill half a book on that. I've got some stories, including a Southwest flight attendant being punched out cold by a passenger. I saw that once. [inaudible 00:23:33]. Adam Brown: 23:35 This might be the hashtag marketing campaign for the said new book. Jay Baer: 23:38 Yeah, there you go. We reenact all the weird stuff right on Facebook Live, like a weird theater troop. I think that's a good idea. Rohit Bhargava: 23:47 I call not getting punched out cold by you. Jay Baer: 23:50 Yeah, that's it. That's it. Well I'm excited for that. When's the travel book coming out? Rohit Bhargava: 23:55 I'll be working on it throughout this year, so probably in the fall. Jay Baer: 23:58 Awesome. That would be great. Just in time for the air traffic controllers to be back online, or something. Adam Brown: 23:58 There you go. Rohit Bhargava: 24:04 Yeah, [inaudible 00:24:06]. Jay Baer: 24:07 The new book, the small business book available from you, Amazon, airports, Barnes & Noble, etc. Rohit Bhargava: 24:14 Yes. Yeah, they're both gonna be available everywhere. I believe just the Non-Obvious 2019 is available in the airport right now. But probably in another month or two, we will have the small business guide there as well. Jay Baer: 24:27 That's great. I just saw the Non-Obvious Guide in the airport yesterday. I was delighted to see it as always. Rohit Bhargava: 24:32 Oh, good. Yeah, thank you. Yeah, it's a good marketing strategy to put a big 2019 on the cover for a book that comes out in January. Jay Baer: 24:40 Yeah, January 1st. Rohit Bhargava: 24:42 People are like, "Oh, I guess this is recent." Jay Baer: 24:44 This is relevant one. I'll buy that. Adam Brown: 24:47 [inaudible 00:24:47] sold all those [inaudible 00:24:48] calendars. Jay Baer: 24:49 That's right. Probably not a lot of back catalog sales though. You know what I need is the 2016 trends. That's [inaudible 00:24:56]. Rohit Bhargava: 24:56 Yeah, exactly. Yeah, that is part of the challenge, to regulate that correctly. It's a good thing I own the publishing company. Otherwise, I'd never get away with doing this. Jay Baer: 25:05 That's for sure. They would never let you. Although, I should say, we talked about this last year. We were discussing the 2018 trends on the show. One of the things that's great about your trend series is that you actually have the compendium of all of the trends at the back of each book, when you update it and say, "These are the ones we got right. These are the ones we got wrong. These are the ones that are still incomplete." That's always a really fascinating exercise to see how a trend from seven years ago has aged. Anything new this year in that update, you're like, "Hey, this is a meaningful development in the truthfulness or inaccuracy of one of the things we've called in the past." Rohit Bhargava: 25:46 It's interesting because the temptation for a lot of people to say, "Oh, just give me the 2019 trends. Everything else must be old." Actually what ends up happening is if there's a trend that I had written about in 2016, for example, what often will happen is it continues to accelerate and it becomes obvious, instead of non-obvious. But it doesn't go away, and it doesn't reverse itself. It actually just becomes more common knowledge. The reason for putting that whole appendix, and by the way, it's not just listing the trends, it's also grading them based on feedback from readers. Each trend from the past has a letter grade, and there's really this ongoing dedication to always finding new ideas and evaluating past trends. As you know, I write this weekly email newsletter which comes out every Thursday. The point of that is to highlight interesting, underappreciated stories every week, and related them to the trends because they're the early warning signals. They're the pieces of the puzzle. The analogy I often use when I'm teaching this method to people is that we need to start collecting ideas the way we collect frequent flyer miles. What I mean by that is when you collect frequent flyer miles, you don't turn around the next day and say, "Okay, where can I go?" You collect them for some time, until eventually you cash them in. I often think about ideas that way, and that's what leads to this book. Adam Brown: 27:14 I like that analogy. I also, like Jay, like the fact that you can go back in both the 2019 book and the subsequent ones, and look at all the previous trends. Curious to that point, and this is my last question for you, Rohit. Grading yourself, have you gotten better, in your opinion, at predicting these trends? As you go back now 10 years of doing this, have you gotten better, and is there any aspect or tell that you're using now that maybe makes your predictions better, that you weren't using in the first couple of years? Rohit Bhargava: 27:50 The short answer is yes and yes. The process has gotten better over time. I think the secret, if there I sone, between the trends that have done better, and the ones that have melted away a little bit is the ones that do really well tend to be more elevated in their thinking. Now what I mean by that is I might talk about a trend, but it is very rarely attached to an industry. For example, if you look at muddled masculinity, that's not a retail trend, it's not a financial services trend, it's not a healthcare trend. It has examples from all of those different sectors. One of the ongoing challenges that I've gotten better at doing over the years is forcing myself to abandon an idea if there's not enough examples of it from multiple industries. That's really tough from a discipline point of view, 'cause sometimes there's something that you really want to be a trend, but you just can't find the evidence for it. One of the things people will see if they go and look at the appendix and those resources is for each one of those trends, there's usually about 30 or 40 backing stories, so many that we don't even print them in the book. There's an online resources section because if I printed the links in the stories for all of these sources, that would take up 25 pages of the book. I don't want to make it too thick. There's a lot of backup behind all of these. The idea is let's elevate the thinking because that means that it's much more likely to be a trend. Jay Baer: 29:23 Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. I love that because if it's too narrow, it's an uber trend for somebody, but maybe not a trend for somebody else. [inaudible 00:29:33] I think the keys for the success of this methodology in the book is that these trends apply universally, maybe, a little too strong, but nearly universally. Everybody can pick up this book and be like, "Oh, yeah, I get this. I see this in my own life." This is gonna make a lot of sense to you if you're a genetic modifier, then it's only relevant to a certain audience. I love it. Ro, we're gonna ask you the questions that we ask you every year, and that we ask all of our guests on the show. Doesn't usually work out like that. I have not because I was running late for the call today. I have not gone back to see what you answered last year, so we'll have to put our best people on that. As you know ... Adam Brown: 30:09 They changed the combination on the vault. Jay Baer: 30:10 Yeah, that's right. Here we are in the 9th year of this show. We've been doing this show about as long as you've been doing the book. The two questions we ask everybody are, what one tip, or it could be a trend in your case, would you give somebody who is looking to become a social pro? Rohit Bhargava: 30:26 What one tip? I would say it's part of my Twitter bio, so maybe this is cheating, but listen before talking. It sounds like easy advice, but it really isn't. We [inaudible 00:30:36]. Jay Baer: 30:37 It's easy advise until your boss wants the engagement report. You're like, "Yeah, but bro, I'm just listening." Rohit Bhargava: 30:43 Yeah. They want the report that says, "Here's the number." Right? Jay Baer: 30:47 Yeah. Yeah. You're listening. That's great. What's our sentiment on that listening? But you're right, no question about that. I think you are correct. Adam thinks you're correct. Second, and final question for you, Rohit Bhargava, who's got two new books, Non-Obvious 2019, new trends, and Non-Obvious Guide To Small Business Marketing (Without Spending Big Money). Both available in places you can get books. If you could do a video call with any living person, who would it be? Rohit Bhargava: 31:19 I don't recall if I answered this the same way last year, so we can go back and check. But I am very inspired by Steve Martin, because of the way he sees the world, and the way he writes. I would just ask him how he spends his days. I just think that would be fascinating, to get inside his mind of what he does and how he thinks now. Jay Baer: 31:41 Yeah, like how much time does he spend playing banjo, verus writing, versus just hanging out. What does your calendar look like, Steve Martin? I don't know if it was you, but I'm almost positive that somebody in the last year answered Steve Martin, but something I think [inaudible 00:31:56]. We'll have to go back. [inaudible 00:31:58] the database. Have you taken his class on masterclass.com? Rohit Bhargava: 32:02 I saw it, but I have not taken it yet. Jay Baer: 32:04 I have not either but I'm told by a couple people who are in the speaking biz that it's really, really good. Adam Brown: 32:09 I heard the exact same thing, Jay. Yeah, and I've done a couple of the MasterClass, and he's the next on my list. Jay Baer: 32:14 Cool. Rohit Bhargava: 32:14 Yeah, I'll have to put him next on my list too. Jay Baer: 32:17 Yeah, that's fantastic. Ro, thanks very much for being here. Again, we really appreciate it each and every year. Congratulations on both books, and now another one just announced here on the Social Pros podcast. Many, many more to come in the Non-Obvious Series. Look him up. If you've seen Non-Obvious on a book, that's a book you should buy. Rohit Bhargava: 32:37 Thank you. Jay Baer: 32:38 Yeah, absolutely. Adam, thank you as well. Fantastic to be with you, as always. We got a bunch of great guests coming up. Adam Brown: 32:46 We sure do. Jay Baer: 32:47 Next week Mark Schaefer, whose new book Marketing Rebellion is amazing. The week after that, some guy named Seth Godin, here on the Social Pros. Adam Brown: 32:57 Who's that guy? Jay Baer: 32:58 [inaudible 00:32:58]. Adam Brown: 32:58 Oh yeah, Seth. Yeah. Yeah, yeah. Jay Baer: 33:00 And fun fact, announced I think for the first time here in this show, my brand new show, my new podcast, and my new video show called The Talk Triggers Show launches is on February 5th. Just go to wherever you get your podcasts. Search for Talk Triggers. Also on YouTube. It's gonna be a blast. It's six minutes a week, only six minutes case studies of amazing word of mouth successes, so look for that. Until next week, he's Adam Brown from Salesforce Marketing Cloud. I am Jay Baer from Convince and Convert. He has been, I guess will continue to be, Rohit Bhargava from Non-Obvious. Thanks so much for listening to Social Pros.  
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