Books come and go. Some of them are published at the beginning of the bell curve and chronicle a cultural shift that gets you ahead of the curve—some of them just enter the scene at the top of the bell curve and talk about what’s hot. Youtility by Jay Baer is a book ahead of the curve.
While the rest of us are writing and reading about how to make our social media posts amazing or viral to gain traction, Jay Baer is saying, “What if instead of being amazing, you just focused on being useful?…if you sell something, you make a customer today; if you help someone, you make a customer for life. Smart marketing is about help, not hype.”
What is Youtility? To quote the author, “Youtility is marketing upside down. Instead of marketing that’s needed by companies, Youtility is marketing that’s wanted by customers. Youtility is massively useful information, provided for free, that creates long-term trust and kinship between your brand and your customers.”
The book is a treatise on laying down the self-promotional aspect of content marketing and taking up the mantle to give fans what they want: information that adds value, solves problems, and helps them have better lives.
“The difference between helping and selling is two letters.” [tweet this now]
In today’s climate, Baer says, Youtility is not an option, it’s necessary.
We’re bombarded constantly with data about trust in the marketplace. Consumers don’t trust brands, they trust each other. Much of what is called marketing today is not connecting, it’s just the same old messages being broadcast with a different megaphone, according to the author. Marketing for top-of-mind awareness only contributes to that distrust. Successful marketing is not about us, it’s about them. When we get that, we’ll be on the road to Youtility.
And talk about case studies and data–Youtility is loaded with examples of brands big and small succeeding in the quest to deliver useful information to their fan bases. I highly recommend this book because I am a strong believer in using social media to create trust and loyalty. In my experience as a crisis manager, I know that brands with a high trust index do better in a crisis, sell more widgets, and are generally more successful. When people trust you, they turn to you for information. Read it and become a believer.