Digital Marketing and Social Media Strategy

Are you a sheep?

Photo from Flickr by: DoblonautAs a kid, I use to question everything. I don’t know what it was in me that made me do it, but I did it. I do it. I’m raising my kids to do it too.

Being raised Catholic, I remember questioning a priest why I had to go to confession. Why did I have to tell my sins to a complete stranger? It didn’t make sense to me.

Question everything

In the US we rely on a couple of television networks to report the news, I think it’s a better idea to go outside and look in? When was the last time you looked at US news from sources like BBC, CBC and the Guardian?

We are very fortunate to have the Internet and be a part of a community of people who care enough to share things with you.

We can go to Snopes if we question a story. We visit Politifact if we really want to see how the president is performing. One only needs to search Google to find out if it’s true. We need to question things more often.

Are you easily manipulated?

Today Seth Godin has a great post on his blog titled Who is easily manipulated? In it, Seth shares a few general categories of behaviors that manipulators seek out:

  • Believing something because you heard someone say it on a news show on cable TV.
  • Being a child (or acting like one).
  • Buying penny stocks.
  • Repeating a mantra heard from a figurehead or leader of a tribe without considering whether it’s true.
  • Trying to find a short cut to lose weight, make money or achieve some other long-term goal.
  • Ignoring the scientific method and embracing unexamined traditional methods instead.
  • Focusing on (and believing) easily gamed bestseller lists or crowds.
  • Inability to tolerate fear and uncertainty.
  • Focus on now at the expense of the long term.
  • Allowing the clothes of the messenger (a uniform, a suit and tie, a hat) to influence your perception of the information he delivers (add gender, fame, age and race to this too).
  • Reliance on repetition and frequency to decide what’s true.
  • Desire to stick with previously made decisions because cognitive dissonance is strong.
  • Inability to ignore sunk costs.
  • Problem saying ‘no’ in social situations.


Do you question things? Are you easily manipulated?


Photo from Flickr by: Doblonaut


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  • Interesting thoughts. I wonder if a line could be drawn between apathy and the sheep. Could it be that we are most engaged and questioning when the subject hits home, and most “sheep-like” when we don't care that much.

    For instance I'll laugh at a forwarded e-mail without thought as to the veracity, but will thoroughly research things work related.

    Nevertheless, I appreciate the wake up and will endeavor to question more.

  • Unless that email is from a Nigerian prince, I hope :)
    Thanks Dan.

  • Speaking of the Nigerian princes who've been exiled and now need help reclaiming their fortunes, I am always aghast when I see another one of those e-mails. It's my experience that should a marketing tactic prove unsuccessful (like changing the Coke formula), it would not be tried again.

    So how gullible must America be for that marketing effort to continue paying off for those Nigerians? I wonder if it is so successful for them that they don't even have to test subject lines.

  • My point exactly. We need to question things more.

    The answers are right at our finger tips, found online.

    More people need to be smart than suckers.

  • Rodney McCarthy

    Your whole blog post…. I don't believe you.

  • Now you're talking!

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    Dave Delaney
    Social Media Coordinator at Griffin Technology
    Greater Nashville Area

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