This morning as I was doing my daily “I’m still waking up, don’t talk to me as I scroll through social and come to life” routine I came across the latest video by the Holderness family. I’ve been a fan of their videos ever since the holiday pajamas one they did years ago.

Today was a conversation between two women – one who loves living in Central Florida and is freezing, bundled up in a down coat and hat and the other clearly from Michigan, in a Tigers tank top and referring to the weather as almost bathing suit season. For the record, I’m a Louisvillian, born and raised here, who lived in Florida followed by Chicago and New York and I’m with the Floridian on this one. It’s cold. I’m currently curled up by my under-desk space heater.

But the point of this conversation (aside from being purely entertaining) is about perspective. Both women are outside in the same weather, but their perspective on how it makes them feel is different.

Perspective is how we create a persona on social. There was a time when Twitter – and LinkedIn – were basically just shout-fests… everyone yelling their opinion, their message, their brand. That went nowhere. And over the past year or so, conversations have reemerged. Through those conversations have come empathy, questions and kindness.

Yes, there’s still some shouting, I know. But once you start engaging on social as a conversationalist, you’re more likely to be served up more conversations. As you begin to engage, if your words show some empathy and show you can look at something from the opposite perspective, then you’re winning at this.

I know your mind has gone to politics or social unrest here, but hear me out. I’m actually referring to a part of your marketing strategy. I’m talking about conversations in your brand’s voice that aren’t specifically marketing messages.

Think about it… let’s say you sell a great product for cleaning floors. You can’t go out on Twitter and start shouting about how great your cleaning product is… who on earth is going to listen to you? I would unfollow you immediately.

But… what if you found a group of people talking about the challenges they have with muddy floors, or kids tracking dirt through the house, or paw prints from dogs coming inside? What if you could engage with these people as a human being, not a salesperson?

This is a mindset shift from telling everyone what you’re selling to listening to their issues, and providing a solution. By simply being present with the name of your brand, you’re doing the job of brand awareness. But by not pushing your message down their twitter feed, you’re showing some empathy and taking the perspective of the listener/reader.

Want to see the video I mentioned above? Click here and enjoy. 

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