Exposure: it's not what you think. 🎞 Experience. Expertise. Excellence.
View this email in your browser
Share Share
Tweet Tweet
Share Share
Hello there:

The idea that you should do something for free in exchange for exposure is making the rounds again.

There''s always been a tension about how much effort to put into earned media and other forms of marketing. But the idea that you should build someone else's platform or do work for free is utter bull.

Now that we got that out of the way, let's see why it's so damaging to get into that mental loop. Often the request comes from sites that want to establish themselves. Their assumption is that you should be grateful for any opportunity that comes along.

Here's the truth: if an opportunity comes along, you've earned it in some way, through your work. True, there may be another 30 people ready to take your place. But it's not a good trade to accept wholesale—you'd be devaluing your work.

It takes time and experience to become good at what you do. If you caught someone's attention, your work attracted them. People and companies that hire you aren't just paying for your time. They're paying for the years you've spent honing your craft. Hence where you want to invest your energy.

Two perspectives:
  • I've done my fair share of pitches as part of creative agencies and in consulting. I know the amount of energy and talent that go into a presentation for a potential client.
  • I've also been on the client side. The temptation to ask for bids to get free work is real. In many companies, it's part of how business gets done. Sadly, the industry has come to accept this as the cost of doing business.
Much of the early fortunes of blogs-turned-into-platforms was built on this idea of work in exchange for visibility. Sometimes there are trade-offs between a blog or personal site and a site like Medium, where there's seemingly a lot of traffic. You need to balance out building your patch on the Internet with sharecropping.

Exposure is nothing like the latter. It's being in the right places at the right time for the people and companies who are looking for your experience and expertise.

It could work well to scatter your thoughts in 1-3 places, but remember that nobody will take the time to connect the dots. Showcasing the full spectrum of your ideas and experience is your job.

Carola and Vittoria are 11 and 13.
During quarantine, they invented a creative way
to play tennis while respecting social distancing.

Dribbling from one roof to the other in Finale Ligure
was an idea that made their video
go around the world

... and a fun way to showcase their skill.

After seeing the video, Roger Federer
and Barilla decided to surprise them
on those same roofs.

Here's the video of their match.


Experience makes your process less expensive. It's the time-tested tip of the spear that helps get to the point faster. The person implementing it knows how to string along tasks to serves the business, and not the other way around.

One of the best definitions I found for experience is that it is the act of trying, the practical knowledge acquired through direct observation and/or participation.

The world seems to be at odds with experts. But we're just at odds with people who actually aren't. Real competence is still a safe bet.

Some ideas on how to define who's an expert.


3 useful ideas:

Curation is one way to create goodwill and gain exposure with the right audience. But say your company only wants to talk about three things: the product, the market it conquers, and the customers it seduces. Regardless of which one(s) you pick, constancy and deliberate effort are the keys to excellence.
There are 20 distinct forms of humor. What appeals to you may not appeal to another person. But also consider what you can pull off and you see how there's more to laughing than just telling a joke.

Experienced artists are able to combine or alternate different kinds. Deadpan (or dry), epigrammatic, highbrow, self-deprecating, and situational appeal to me. Find what appeals to you here.

“Life is faster than expected.
On many things one is surprised to be late."

- Franca Valeri
Italian actress, playwright, screenwriter, author, theater director
(July 31, 1920, Milan - August 09, 2020, Rome)

Why diversity of thinking helps reveal opportunity

Innovating: beyond the sex appeal

I ground all my sites here.
If you're a creator and are planning to ground your digital presence using WordPress, check SiteGround out.

Graduate to fast, affordable WordPress hosting.

Forward to a friend Forward to a friend
Thank you for reading. I appreciate you.
Conversation Agent LLC / @ConversationAge
Copyright © 2020 Conversation Agent LLC, All rights reserved.

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp