I would like to tell you the tale of two famous performers and how one of them changed my perspective on business and blogging forever.
A few months ago I was fortunate enough to attend two concerts in one week.
The first one was Art Garfunkel, the legendary singer of Simon and Garfunkel fame. He filled a modest hall of maybe 1,000 capacity and performed with a lone guitarist to accompany his iconic voice.
During the show he complained a lot. He publicly embarrassed a person for opening a door in the back of the auditorium, exclaiming that it broke his concentration. He told a story of how he humiliated an audience member for texting during his show. We came to hear his famous songs but over the course of 90 minutes, he did not sing many of them, instead filling time reading his own poetry from note cards. He didn’t allow any video or photography, and in an extreme measure, a security officer reprimanded an audience member for taking a selfie before the show even started.
The next night, my wife and I went to see Keith Urban. I am not a huge fan of Keith’s music but I went along because I am a dutiful husband. When he took the stage, 15,000 screaming fans took pictures and videos to celebrate this magical moment, an explosion of sound and light and video images. Some held signs showing the count of how many concerts they had attended or how far they had traveled.
At one point he walked through the crowd, and climbed the arena steps so even people in the highest seats could get a look at him. Along the way, he grabbed phones and posed for selfies, never missing a beat. When he reached the top of the arena, he unstrapped his guitar, signed it, and handed it to a young fan. He played, and danced and ran around the stage until he was clearly exhausted … and then he continued for another 30 minutes, to make sure he covered every hit from his songbook and more.
When the show was over and the lights were up, I was amazed to look back and see this global superstar sitting on the end of the stage by himself, dripping with sweat and signing autographs.
And here is what I thought: “That man gives his fans EVERYTHING.”
The contrast between the two performances was more than a lesson really. It was an inspiration.
I left thinking, “That is what I have to do to earn fans like this. This is what is required in a noisy, competitive world. I have to give my audience everything.”
How does this lesson translate to your business?
Illustration courtesy of Flickr CC and Darlene Moore