If you watched the Super Bowl, you might have been surprised when Jerry Seinfeld and Jason Alexander appeared in a pre-halftime ad. Even more surprising, though, is that it wasn’t an ad at all. FOX approached Seinfeld because they enjoyed the web series the “ad” was based on: “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee.” FOX wanted to offer something cool and beloved to kick off (pun intended) the Super Bowl’s halftime coverage. This media showed quite a bit of passion.
Promoting your content on large media outlets requires a ton of hard work, but Jerry Seinfeld and his cohorts managed to make it look so easy. Part of his genius is that he cultivated his existing audience from the show Seinfeld, which was wildly popular during the 90s (and still is, in syndication). More recently, Jerry Seinfeld developed a concept that was undeniably entertaining and worthy of shares, allowing him to leverage this existing fan base while garnering new devotees with a fresh spin on a show about nothing.
And now, instead of going to producers to reach the larger network television audience, he had producers coming to him.
You might not have a concept as brilliant as “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee,” but there are lessons to be learned about what you do with your content as a marketer. How do you make audiences flock to you naturally?
Do What You Love!
Great content comes from passion. If you’re not passionate about a project you’re working on, it can show in your work. The more passionate you are about what you’re doing, the more you care about it. The more you care, the better your content will ultimately be.
Seinfeld is passionate about comedy, and it shows. Another great example of passion-fueled success is the web comic “Axe Cop,” drawn by Ethan Nicolle (age 29 at the time) and written by his younger brother Malachai Nicolle (age 5). Although it looks at first blush like your standard comic book, Malachai’s ridiculous storylines had readers’ sides splitting from laughter. Word traveled fast, and it became extremely popular.
Passion + Guest Blogging = Win-Win
Because he recognized the entertainment quality of the “Axe Cop” comic, FOX’s ADHD producer Nick Weidenfeld went to Ethan Nicolle and asked to create an animated version of the comic. Even more noteworthy is that the ADHD programming slot aligns almost perfectly with the audience that was already reading Axe Cop! Ethan Nicolle cultivated an audience of weirdo nerds, and Weidenfeld knew he had a similar audience that would appreciate it, so the marriage of the two was a win-win.
And it was the same with “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee.” A FOX exec saw Seinfeld’s great content asked Jerry Seinfeld for a contribution — the TV equivalent of a guest post. Seinfeld provided FOX exactly what they asked for, and FOX shared it with a brand new audience.
This is what guest blogging should be. Guest blogging should be about the audience, about understanding what the audience wants or needs and giving them more of it.
Marketing consultant Jay Baer constantly reminds us that people use the Internet for two things: (1) to find a solution for a problem, or (2) to be entertained. “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee” and “Axe Cop” fulfill entertainment desires quite well — and it’s all because the creators were passionate. Even if you’re not entertaining your audience, you need to be passionate about your content or, barring that, passionate about your audience. If what you care about is only placement and links, it will show, and it won’t do anyone — your brand, the host blog or the host blog’s audience — much good.
How does your passion show in your content? Tell us in the comments.