Social the Bruce Springsteen Way

Thanks to the generosity of a fabulous friend, I danced Saturday night away at the Bruce Springsteen concert at Gilette Stadium in Foxboro, Mass. A rocking, rambunctious girls night out might not be the most logical place to come up with your top four truths for social media and content marketing. But, truth comes from the strangest places.

4. Be prepared
Bruce Springsteen is famous for taking song requests from the audience. He fully expects his band to be able to play anything from their catalog at a moment’s notice. He changes his set list nightly. Songs played one night make no appearance the next. And, he plays covers on top of his own songs. That’s a tall order.

How does it apply to your social strategy? Are you able to deal with online complaints? Do you know who you are targeting? Do you know who your content creators are? Until you have the answers to these questions, you aren’t prepared to jump into social.

3. Know your fans
Bruce Springsteen has been around for a long time. His first album was released in 1973. Over the past 40 years, he has had commercial hits and flops, and in between. When it comes to planning his concerts, it’s critical that he pay homage to the fans who have granted him his long standing success. What are those favorites? Are they always his commercial hits? With a 40 year catalog to choose from, someone is always bound to be disappointed (I wish he had played Rosalita myself.)

It’s important to know what your fans will forgive, and what will turn them off, possibly forever. (Think Gap and Coca-Cola.) Make sure you are meeting your fans’ needs and wants. After all, they are the backbone of your success.

2. Try something new
Reunion tours are popular. Aging rock stars get together, sing their greatest hits, and collect the profits from a nostalgic, but formulaic tour. They try nothing new. They take no risks. They appeal only to the past, not the future.

But not Bruce. Rather than rest on his impressive rock star resume, Bruce continues to release new music. This tour supports his latest album. Many songs played were from the past few.

It’s critical for your business to keep up with the times. Styles and technology change. Whether that means changing your marketing or changing your logo, newer, potential fans expect you to cater to their reality. Now. If you stay the same while times change, you will be left behind.

1. Give it your all
Even at the age of 62, Bruce Springsteen is a hardworking, hard rocking guy. He put on a 3 and half hour show, never once slowing down. He was a singing, dancing, running, stomping, storytelling, joke making, machine. He played for a good half hour after the lights came on, including an extended version of Twist and Shout. He likely violated some local curfew. He made sure that everyone – from the newest fan to the oldest – had a great time. He played his heart out, making sure his fans – the consumer – felt like they were getting the most for their money.

How do you make your clients feel wanted? Do you make every interaction one they appreciate? Do you balance their needs with those of your business?

Springsteen demonstrated preparation, tradition, experimentation and execution. The very same things that lead to social media success. Bruuuce!

Which of your favorite entertainers pull off this balancing act? We’d love to know!


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About Jess Weiss

If you think all Web people are geeks,
 that’s ok—this digital strategist actually considers 
that a compliment. A lawyer in her former life,
 she is multi-talented and
 adept at making the Web a world we can all understand. She has worked for Children’s 
Hospital, Boston University, and even the 
Governor of Massachusetts, and makes sure
 each of our clients is just as recognizable. In addition to creating standout online ads and websites, Jess directs our clients’ Search Engine Optimization campaigns and is our resident social media guru. Whether you want to make sure everyone can find you on Google, or find new ways to connect with your audience on Facebook, Jess has the plan to make it happen. When she’s not busy coding, tweeting, or keyword-monitoring, you’ll find Jess working 
on her next home renovation or seeking out 
new travel spots with her son and husband.