In last week’s blog post, I covered three of Peter Yarrow’s marketing secrets: Be Genuine, Draw the Audience to Participate, and Inspire. It’s still amazing to me that I learned so much from one concert, but those are only half the revelations!
So without further ado, let’s explore the other half of Peter Yarrow’s best marketing secrets.
Secret #4: Be Kind
Despite the serious topics that Peter’s music addresses (equal rights, peace, the environment, gender equality, and bullying), he is also a grateful man. He insisted that the sound tech stand up and take a bow, even though she clearly didn’t want to. He was so thrilled to have us for an audience, and he made sure we knew it. I can’t help but think that if we treated our business associates and potential customers with the same degree of kindness and gratitude, they would be sure to reciprocate.
Secret #5: Be Part of a Larger Picture
One of the best parts of the concert was Peter’s description of the 1963 March on Washington. He told a story about his daughter, who at the age of 13 had decided that she wanted to get arrested alongside her father. And he talked a great deal about the Weavers, who inspired him in the first place, and about the groups that are keeping the movement alive today. “We’re part of a long train ride,” he said, and it was obvious that he meant every word.
It struck me as particularly relevant today, as we get so caught up in social media and online marketing, that we are none of us an island. Just as Peter Yarrow is part of a long train ride, our businesses are part of the movement towards finding a lifestyle that allows us to follow our passions, to give back to others, and to change the world.
Secret #6: Harmony Requires a Melody
One thing I didn’t figure out during my years of watching Peter, Paul, and Mary specials is that Peter actually sings the harmony lines as often as possible. And, he loves doing it – you can see his face light up when his eyes connect with his fellow performer and his voice soars above the melody. But here’s the secret – he couldn’t sing the harmony without someone singing the melody.
In other words, for him to do what he loves best requires an active partnership with someone who sings what he or she loves – the melody. Our businesses are the same way – for us to do what we love for our clients, they also have to be in an active partnership with us.
Like most brilliant ideas, these secrets are simply to understand, and difficult to execute. But as I walked out of that concert, I firmly believed that every one of them was vital to me as a person, and as a small business owner.
They take the guesswork and the “playing games” out of marketing and turn it into a genuine expression of ourselves, our passions, and our businesses. I can’t think of a better way to honor Peter Yarrow and “Puff, the Magic Dragon” than that. Can you?
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