The Clean and Green Club, July 2015

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Shel Horowitz’s Clean and Green Marketing Tip, July 2015
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Discounts on My Two Best Marketing Books—Yours for Just $15 each

Guerrilla Marketing Goes Green was published originally by Wiley. It was named a Groundbreaking Indie Book by Independent Publisher Magazine, republished in Italy and Turkey, and on the Amazon category bestseller lists at least 33 different months). 236 pages of great information on marketing green businesses, plus a bonus package worth hundreds of dollars. Originally priced at $21.95.
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Grassroots Marketing: Getting Noticed in a Noisy World was published by Chelsea Green, at $22.95. A Finalist for Foreword Magazine’s Book of the Year Award, this large-format paperback has 306 pages of information to help any business or organization market more effectively and spend less money doing so. It includes a bonus two-chapter ebook covering social media and other new developments.
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This Month’s Tip: Make It Viral, Part 3
Successful Examples and Ideas

I’d hope to fill this whole issue with subscriber success stories. However, only two of you wrote to me with your experiences. I am pretty surprised, as publicity is one of the best ways to make something go viral, and I was offering no-strings-attached publicity.

It may be that viral marketing success is a lot rarer than the gurus make it out to be. In any case, I will fill out the article with other examples.

Participate in Relevant Twitter Chats/Post Exciting Topical Content
Find hashtag Twitter chats that relate to the idea, product, service, or cause you wish to promote. (A good resource is @chatsalad.) Engage in lively conversation with like-minded people on related twitter chats. Ask and answer questions *related* to the topic being discussed. Respond directly to what others say. Be genuine and heartfelt. Do not distort the focus of the dialogue to blast your notices. Keep it very personal. If you contribute something unique, eye-catching, inspiring, or provocative, it’s likely to get retweeted and spread out.

I do best with the chats that have a large audience, hundreds of people. I’m making friends and building relationships. I got really involved in a discussion of the ethics of content marketing on #contentchat. People mentioned, retweeted, and responded. The lively conversation drove up my Klout score [editor’s note: a rough measure of your authority on Twitter].

Also, respond to trends. Within a day, I had 170 comments across social media on a post about Hillary Clinton hiring a Monsanto lobbyist to help her win in Iowa.
–Judah Freed (@judahfreed)

Do a Long-List Blog Post
I consult with people who are looking to come off or find alternatives to medicinal psychiatrics. I wrote a very long list of things people could try before taking them. This was my most successful blog post on my own site ever. It was shared on Facebook over 900 times (I’ve had articles shared more than that, but on other more popular sites). It got viewed 1183 times the day I posted it.
–Chaya Grossberg, Intuitive Healer

Grab Onto a Universal Meme
Dave Carroll and his band the Sons of Maxwell grabbed onto the popular theme of corporate indifference to the trouble they cause ordinary people with their Youtube video, “United Breaks Guitars.” More than 15,000,000 people have watched the main posting of this video as of July 1–and that doesn’t count the gazillion spin-off videos and reposts.

Blow the Doors Off People’s Expectations
When an unemployed housewife in a frumpy dress, looking 15 years older than her actual age, walked onstage of “Britain’s Got Talent” six years ago, it was clear that no one expected much. Then she started singing. And Susan Boyle got the singing career she wanted. An astonishing 171,861,870 people have watched this. If you’re not one of them, visit

Be Irresistibly Cute
This commercial for Google Android featuring lots of cuddly interspecies friendships has attracted 18,251,438 viewers on Youtube (and probably many more on regular TV). What it doesn’t do, in my opinion, is sell phones (or anything else). I don’t see anything relevant in the song lyrics, the tagline message, or the visuals that does anything to brand Android as my phone of choice (and I own one).

Be Irresistibly Useful
Let’s stay with the Big G for a moment, and go back to its earliest days. Do you remember the first time someone showed you Google’s search engine? The combination of a clean interface, instant results, and a very strong degree of relevance blew a lot of people away, including me. It was lightyears ahead of Alta Vista and Yahoo and Excite, and spread like wildfire. The company was incorporated in September, 1998, and two months later was heralded by PC Magazine as the best search engine, with “an uncanny knack for returning extremely relevant results.” By the time the company started monetizing by selling advertising, a couple of years later, Google utterly dominated search—as far as I know, without buying any paid advertising about its search services.

Create an Unstoppable Movement
I told you about Save the Mountain, the environmental group I formed in 1999, in the May issue. The viral nature of our success was a lot about noticing a moment that was ready for change, and positioning our group to ride the wave. 

In the aftermath of the June United States Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage, you probably discovered a lot of your Facebook friends had “rainbowized” their profile pictures as a way of celebrating. This was another right-place/right-time movement. I would have never predicted in 1979 when I first attended a same-sex commitment ceremony that gay/lesbian marriage would be legal anywhere in the US within my lifetime. Even after my own state of Massachusetts became the first in 2004, I never thought that 11 years later, it would be the law of the land across the nation. 

It was only in 1969, with the Stonewall riot in New York City during a police raid of a gay bar, that significant numbers of gays and lesbians began demanding acceptance by the mainstream culture. Gay marriage pushed that movement to new heights, while at the same time, the mainstreaming of same-sex lifestyles pushed same-sex marriage. The two together created a synergy that neither one could have done alone. 

The bigotry that had been the “normal” treatment toward non-heterosexuals a few short decades ago is certainly not banished—but it *has* become socially unacceptable. And businesses are harnessing their support to their benefit.

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About Shel & This Newsletter

As a green business profitability/marketing consultant and copywriter…award-winning author of eight books… international speaker and trainer, blogger, syndicated columnist – Shel Horowitz shows how green, ethical, and socially conscious businesses can actually be *more* profitable than your less-green, less-socially-aware competitors. His most recent book is category bestseller Guerrilla Marketing Goes Green: Winning Strategies to Improve Your Profits and Your Planet. Shel also helps authors/ publishers, small businesses, and organizations to market effectively, and turns unpublished writers into well-published authors.

Shel Horowitz’s consulting firm, Green And Profitable, is the first business ever to earn Green America’s rigorous Gold Certification as a leading green company. He was inducted into the National Environmental Hall of Fame in 2011.

He began publishing his monthly newsletter all the way back in 1997, making it one of the oldest marketing e-zines (it’s changed names a few times along the way).

“As always, some of the links in this newsletter earn commissions—because I believe in the products and services enough to promote them (I get asked to endorse lots of other programs I don’t share with you, because I don’t find them worthy).”
Hear & Meet Shel/Friends who Want to Help
As a panelist, I can get you tix to @KenMcArthur’s $697 Impact event, Phila, July 30 to August 2, for just $97: (click the link on that page to see the awesome lineup of presenters, then return to the link above to get the deal). If you attend, be sure to say howdy.
Another Recommended Book—Engaging Emergence: Turning Upheaval into Opportunity

Engaging Emergence: Turning Upheaval into Opportunity by Peggy Holman (Berrett-Koehler, 2010)

Out of chaos, something different and better can often emerge—if we respond to disruption as a growth opportunity, at least.

From running a meeting to creating a revolution, Holman cites numerous examples of harnessing disruption, working through it to something more inclusive, easier on the environment, and more likely to create the world we want—even if getting to this wonderful destination can be painful. She encourages us to “embrace mystery: seek the gifts hidden in what we don’t know,” “choose possibility: call forth ‘what could be,’” and “follow life energy: trust deeper sources of direction.”
Change, she says, will be 10 times as rapid in the 21st century as it was in the 20th (which was in turn the fastest-changing period in history). This means recognizing that big change often starts with tiny steps…viewing problems not as something to fix, but as doorways to new opportunities…understanding that when we make space for divergent viewpoints and time not only to act but to contemplate, the whole group can go much deeper.

When we do move to action, she tells us to
• Compassionately disrupt, by asking possibility-oriented questions that lead to “a virtuous cycle of creativity and renewal”
• Creatively engage with people of different viewpoints and experience; get out of our own comfort zones
• Foster “wise renewal,” remembering that answers and solutions are likely to be nuanced rather than absolutes

Here’s a possibility-oriented question about asking questions: “How do we shape inquiries so compelling that they focus us on the best of what we can imagine, attract others, and connect us to realize what we most desire?” (p. 80).

Holman is a co-founder of Journalism that Matters, a group that seeks to keep journalism relevant and focused on the wider world. To the famous journalists’ 5 Ws (Who, What, When, Where, Why), she adds a sixth: “What’s possible now?”

With my focus for the past year on business solving hunger, poverty, war, and catastrophic climate change, I was particularly intrigued when Holman 1) pointed out the energy savings of peace; when we listen better, we fight less:

Wisdom seems to be emerging more often as evolution itself evolves toward increasing complexity, diversity, and awareness. Whether truth and reconciliation in South Africa or peace in Northern Ireland, intractable challenges are being settled peacefully. Perhaps wise renewal is moving us toward increased energy efficiency. Emergence through creative engagement no doubt uses far less energy than war. (pp. 175-176)
And 2), she described a session with Palestinian activists, who used a technique called Appreciative Inquiry to look beyond resisting the separation wall sealing them off from Israel—to harnessing the wall as part of the process of change. (pp. 119-120)

Until next month…

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