Edit ModuleShow Tags

Eleven trends for finding fame


Published:

(Editor's note: This is the second of two parts. Read Part I.)

During the Middle Ages, there were peasants and royalty and very little in between. Over the past couple centuries, mediums like newspapers, radio, and television were born, giving rise to whole new classes of celebrities.

More recently, over the past two decades, the Internet has spawned countless new media channels, each giving birth to their own brand of celebs. At the same time, there are far more changes afoot than most of us realize.

1.) Additional Channels for Discovery – Today, the path to fame can take thousands of different routes. As an example, becoming famous on Quirky, Kickstarter, Vine, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Pintrest, or Reddit are all options that were never available 20 years ago.

2.) Far More Categories of Fame – Everything from video game tournaments, to online cooking shows, to crowdfunding campaigns have all spawned new categories of famous people.
 

3.) Every Level of Fame Comes with Incremental Degrees of Recognition – Gone are the black-n-white days of famous or not famous. As the amount of information we consume increases, so does the space we have in our lives for those we admire. In addition to name recognition, fame can be measured by the number of social media followers, video views, article downloads, online web footprint, books sold, radio appearances, or a multitude of other metrics.

4.) The Multidimensional Nature of Fame – Today we have famous people in every industry, every community of interest, every nationality, every region, and in tons of quirky online niches. Tomorrow there will be even more.

5.) Better Tools to Manage Fan Clubs – It’s rare that people become famous without effort. It typically requires effort, usually sustained effort over a long period of time. Managing a personal fan club is all part of the work that prepares people to climb the ladder to celebrity.

6.) Fewer Gatekeepers – Yes it is still difficult to get an article published in the New York Times or make an appearance on the Tonight Show with Jimmie Fallon. It even takes some work to get your Kickstarter campaign accepted. But anyone can create a blog, self-publish a book, post a YouTube video, or create a Facebook account.

7.) Risk-Taking is Approaching Free – At the same time that gatekeepers are going away, recording and posting videos, blog postings, tweets, emails, Facebook entries, and a multitude of other tools needed to become famous are becoming less expensive every day.

8.) Raising the Bar on Accomplishments – Running the 4-minute mile has come and gone. Every well-crafted TED talk competes for mindshare with every other form of media. Every significant accomplishment raises the bar, causing our expectations to grow. Our short attention span coupled with our ability to instantly switch channels or webpages has left us with little tolerance for average and mediocre performances.

9.) Our Need for Heroes is Increasing – The Internet is enabling each of us to live hyper-individualized lifestyles, and every social circle, area of interest, and technical profession demands people who are our heroes to help guide our thinking

10.) The Path to Celebrity is Becoming Clearer – The number of “personalities” we will come into contact with throughout our lives will continue to grow. Our increased exposure to celebrity people gives us a better perspective on how to become one.

11.) Novelty is Limitless – There is no limit to human creativity, and combining ingenuity with emerging technology, existing tools, and a few expansive approaches to unlocking what’s possible, gives anyone who would otherwise be destined to live their lives in obscurity a way out.

Final Thoughts

No one can deny the brilliance behind the enormously successful ALS Ice Bucket Challenge that garnered over 1 billion views on YouTube during it peak two month period of July and August of this year. But what triggered its success?

It all began when Pete Frates and Pat Quinn, both having been diagnosed with ALS came up with something they called the "Cold Water Challenge."

The challenge first received media attention in the U.S. on June 30, 2014, when the program Morning Drive, aired the first on-air Ice Bucket Challenge on the Golf Channel.

Soon after, Matt Lauer did the Ice Bucket Challenge on The Today Show after being challenged by Greg Norman. This was quickly followed by everyone from Bill Gates, to Elon Musk, George Bush, and millions more getting buckets of ice water dumped on their heads.

The Ice Bucket Challenge has come and gone, leaving many of asking, “What’s next?”

The only predictable path to fame is through success, but success is hard to define and rarely predictable.

As I wrap up this discussion on grandstanding, I will leave you with three parting thoughts:

  • The future favors the bold
  • Fame is best leveraged by those who are well-prepared
  • Grandstanding without a follow-up plan is useless

If you’re looking for a new grandstanding approach to promote your business, product, or yourself, there will always be some new way to get discovered.

As famed marketing guru Seth Godin likes to say, “Marketing is a contest for people's attention.”

It may be helpful to think of grandstanding simply as a global competition for people’s attention. But what you do after you’ve gained it will be a key deciding factor.

Edit Module
Thomas Frey

Thomas Frey is the executive director and senior futurist at the DaVinci Institute and currently Google’s top-rated futurist speaker.  At the Institute, he has developed original research studies, enabling him to speak on unusual topics, translating trends into unique opportunities. Tom continually pushes the envelope of understanding, creating fascinating images of the world to come.  His talks on futurist topics have captivated people ranging from high level of government officials to executives in Fortune 500 companies including NASA, IBM, AT&T, Hewlett-Packard, Unilever, GE, Blackmont Capital, Lucent Technologies, First Data, Boeing, Ford Motor Company, Qwest, Allied Signal, Hunter Douglas, Direct TV, Capital One, National Association of Federal Credit Unions, STAMATS, Bell Canada, American Chemical Society, Times of India, Leaders in Dubai, and many more. Before launching the DaVinci Institute, Tom spent 15 years at IBM as an engineer and designer where he received over 270 awards, more than any other IBM engineer.

Get more content like this: Subscribe to the magazine | Sign up for our Free e-newsletter

Edit ModuleShow Tags

Archive »Related Articles

Key to growth: A relationship with your lender

It isn’t a secret – Colorado’s economy is vibrant and strong. New developments continue to spring up across the state, many entrepreneurs have started new businesses, and many more companies are growing and need resources to meet their increased demand. What’s the secret to ensure business owners...

Do we need a new word for entrepreneur?

Has the word entrepreneur become too trendy as to have lost its meaning? I’m hearing it and the word entrepreneurship being used in so many conversations incorrectly. I’m critical of the use of the word "entrepreneur"...are you?

Hot tips for emerging company boards

Emerging companies comprise a significant portion of Colorado businesses. Venture capitalists, angel investors and founders make up the shareholders and the boards of directors of many of these companies. I spoke recently to Fran Wheeler, a partner in the Business Department of the Colorado Office...
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags