Five Marketing Lessons we can Learn from Ted Williams

If you have been anywhere near a computer, smart phone or TV in the past three days, you’ve likely heard about Ted Williams, the man with the golden voice. If you haven’t, watch this YouTube video. Now.

In 48 hours, Ted’s video had reached more than 8 million views on YouTube and was also fueled by a number of other social media sites. Yesterday, Ted made his rounds on the national morning news shows and has had job offers rolling in ever since.

I am completely fascinated with the various layers of this story. Certainly, this phenomenon says a lot about how media has changed.

This story proves we no longer need traditional journalists sitting behind a news desk to tell us what’s important. Anyone can find stories and share them with the world — no fancy production equipment needed.

However, I am also incredibly enamored with Ted himself. In watching the various interviews and videos, I realized there is a lot we can learn from Ted that applies to how we market ourselves and our businesses.

Here are five marketing lessons I took away from watching Ted:

1. Good stories sell. And spread.

Let’s face it. We all like a feel good story. We love it even more when it involves an underdog who overcomes hardships to achieve triumph and redemption. Ted’s story embodies all of that. It’s irresistible. You just have to share it. You want to be part of it and let everyone in on this amazing gem.

What’s your story? What makes you unique?

2. Have something amazing to offer.

If Ted had only an mediocre voice, we
 even be talking about this. He isn’t Ted with the “better-than-average-might-make-it-someday” voice, he’s Ted with the Golden voice.

Do you have something spectacular to offer?

3. Eliminate the negative.

If you watch the video, Ted mentions that drugs and alcohol were a big part of his downward spiral. But, he shed those addictions and has been clean for two years. Had that not been the case, I doubt all of the job offers would be rolling in.

What bad habits or negativity is holding you or your business back?

4. It pays to be kind.

Who said nice guys finish last? Ted has an effervescent smile and exudes kindness. He’s grateful and courteous. You WANT to help a guy like or work with someone like that.

How do you treat your clients, employees and vendors? Could you be a little kinder?

5. Ya gotta make the ask.

Ted knew what he wanted and put himself out there. It was a long shot, for certain. But, he knew what he had to offer and put that on display for people to see.

Do you let people know what you have to offer?

What do you think? What did you learn from Ted?

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Laura Click

Laura Click is brand strategist, speaker, podcaster and the founder of Blue Kite. Learn more about Laura and her work at Blue Kite.

6 replies on “Five Marketing Lessons we can Learn from Ted Williams”

Great post Laura. 100% agree with your five lessons. This is one of those instances where the real power of the new media shows it strength. People love the underdog and stories of redemption. Ted’s story is that story and it contains the WOW factor. As soon as you hear his voice you say WOW.

love the breakdown. I think you allude to it, but one of the highlights of this is the right place at the right time feel of it.
Thanks to his mother, Ted seems to be highly willing to get religion and thank God for this opportunity.
Seems like a lot of this one was thanks to those Dispatch folks who took the 5 minutes to video him.

They are in the background now, but this “second” (realizing how many others he probably had)chance while facilitated by his “preparation” of your list of five would not be possible without the luck? opportunity? fortune? of them coming along with a camera!

Certainly a lot of things had to be aligned for all of this to happen. I think divine intervention had a LOT to do with this. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that he found God and then all of this happened.

Go read Daniel’s post for another look at this. As he points out, we all need to be better about giving people a chance, despite their appearance and situation. There’s a lot to be said for the reporter who had a nose for a story and took a chance on Ted. We could all learn from that.

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