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To get buzz for your own work, first buzz the great work of others.

You might be tempted to think that generating buzz for your work is easy or that it happens randomly and immediately if you’ve put out something especially great.

But that’s not how it works.

If you want to generate buzz, you need to give people something to talk about. And, frankly, you need to invest a lot of time building relationships strong enough to help you get the word out. Yes, the awesomeness of your work might stand on its own, but if nobody knows about it or you’re the only one talking about it, so what?

Realistically, you need others to sing its praises for you. The best way to make that happen is to always be looking for opportunities to generate buzz by promoting the great work of others, including your competitors. This work must start long before you need to buzz your own work. I’m talking years before, not weeks or months.

Also, if you expect everyone you’ve ever helped rise in stature through your supportive marketing and promotion efforts will be willing to reciprocate, you are in for a big letdown. In my experience, only 1 in 10 of those whose work you’ve supported will likely do the same for you in future. It’s surprising to see who steps up to buzz your work and who fades into the distance faster than a winter sunset.

It’s not personal

You can’t take any of this personally. It’s simply the way it is. If you do, your heart will hurt and a tsunami of negative feelings will swamp your soul causing your spirit to sink lower than you ever thought humanly possible. The more you resist accepting this marketing reality, the greater the risk you’ll experience spiritual suicide.

The answer isn’t to limit how much marketing you do for the benefit of others. Indeed, the remedy is to do even more.

But the secret is to do so without expectation and to remain detached from the outcome. Carrying a chip on your shoulder because someone whose work you publicly supported for three years will not even so much as share a tweet on your behalf just isn’t productive.

Yes, feelings do get hurt over situations like this. No, plotting your revenge isn’t productive by any stretch of the imagination.

Buzz is always about generating good feelings and conversational flow. Forget about who’s with you and who’s not. Get out there and find more great work to buzz the hell out of without needing reciprocation or recognition. The universe will take care of the rest and your turn will come.