What Can We Learn From Steve Jobs About Publicity?

In 1997, Steve Jobs was answering questions posed by developers at Apple’s Worldwide Developer’s Conference (WWDC). While answering one of their questions, he mentions that “focusing is about saying no.”

The problem a lot of people have when they are trying to get publicity for themselves is that they lack focus. It is okay to be good at a lot of things, but not everyone needs to know everything you are good at (especially if you want to be recognized as an industry expert).

Jobs also mentions:

"Apple suffered for several years from lousy engineering management. And there were people that were going off in 18 different directions--doing arguably interesting things in each one of them. Good engineers. Lousy management.

And what happened was, you look at the farm that's been created, with all these different animals going in different directions, and it doesn't add up. The total is less than the sum of the parts. And so we had to decide: What are the fundamental directions we're going in? And what makes sense and what doesn't? And there were a bunch of things that didn't. And microcosmically they might have made sense; macrocosmically they made no sense.

...When you think about focusing, you think, well, focusing is about saying yes. No.”

Just because you can do something, doesn’t always mean you should. The same way you find a niche and stick with it in business, you need to find a lane and stay in it for publicity.

 Photo Credit: Pexels

Photo Credit: Pexels

The Visible ROI of Publicity

  • Increase Social Media Engagement

  • Targeted traffic to your website

  • New Leads in your marketing funnel

  • Sales

All of these things are measurable and work together to establish you as an authority in your industry.

The Invisible ROI of Publicity

  • Brand awareness

  • Referrals for speaking engagements

  • Referrals for more media interviews

  • Referrals to new clients

I like to think of this as scaling your word of mouth marketing campaign. Before the Internet, companies grew because they served their clients and their clients wanted to refer their friends to those companies. Today, businesses still grow this way in the beginning, but if you are not taking advantage of the benefits of scaling your audience then you are missing out on an opportunity to have word of mouth referrals from sources who have never met you and never worked with you.

If you gain a lot of publicity for yourself and there is no strategy behind it and you are talking about any topic you find interesting, you are doing yourself a disservice because you are confusing your audience. They cannot refer people to you if they do not know what you do. So, while you may be able to give advice on 18 different topics, if you want to move the needle forward and maximize your ROI on your publicity strategy, then it needs to spread a consistent message.

If you would like more tips on how you can increase your credibility online, join my 5 day publicity challenge here.

You can also watch my Truth Tuesday Video titled “Is all publicity good publicity?” on YouTube here: