There Are No Rules

That’s right. They’re all gone. The laws and guidelines for communicating have been replaced by, well, nothing.

Beautiful, isn’t it?

A lot of marketing is over thought. It’s actually deceptively simple now. In the last 10 years, we’ve stopped taking notes from trade magazines and adhering to the standards of media outlets. Our strategies are more primal, less institutional. We can scout unknown territory to reach people who will listen.

Brands are free to make their own maps.

As a communicator - no matter your age, city or job title - you have the tools and permission you need right now to share your brand with the world. You don’t need a degree when you have the Internet. Sounds insane, right? Luckily, our generation has been given a rare opportunity to write our own rules. The means of productions are in our hands.

We can do it all, and that’s the hard part.

The new media has fewer boundaries. While this grants us more freedom, it also provides less direction. There’s more potential to do interesting things, but the owner’s manual is blank. We just have to go do - and quickly. Refreshing your Twitter feed is more than enough proof that world-class campaigns are made in minutes. It’s a fast-paced, idea-driven world bubbling over with art and code.

So, where do you fit in?

If you’re like many marketing pros or small business owners, you try to stay plugged into all things interesting. You try to convince yourself that you have to be current or die, but find that it’s nearly impossible to keep up. It’s hard to stay productive at work while tabbing between Fast Company and Slack.

How do you master the ever-evolving media landscape? Ignore it. Start creating. Now.

We’ve evolved in communication, yes. We’re writing our own laws and discovering what works for us. This shift doesn’t require reading every blog post (even this one) that tells us what’s “hot” in the industry. The new challenge we’ve been given is to make, share and connect. Ignoring the hyped listicles and “industry insights” allows us more time to focus on creating.

Study the greats, but don’t follow every trend. It’s a cheap code to live by.

Sure, you might get some quick press because you used the right hashtag, but trendy is forgettable. Developing style is more important. That and experimentation are the key to growing as a brand. Do what’s right for your strategy and mission, not  the“12 Things Every Marketer Should Do Right Now.”

Put in the time to craft a consistently curious and relatable brand and you’ll see results over time. The old guard followed procedure until they produced something to fit in a box; something that might be seen by a lot of people at once, over and over. That doesn’t work anymore. Create custom-fitted solutions to your problems for your consumers. Work hard to share real moments with real people using the infinite tools at your disposal.

Create. Fail. Grow. Repeat.

Toucan is a New Orleans-based advertising agency.

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