Bourbon Street, New Orleans – it’s like taking a step around the corner into another world where nothing is taboo.  If you have a fun and fearless side, this place will surely bring it out!  And YES, this applies to public accountants as well!

Peer Pressure in Middle Age?

Last week, I spoke in the Big Easy on the many benefits of B2B Content Marketing to the North American members of the Alliott Group, a worldwide alliance of independent accounting, law and consulting firms.  I was invited (aka “strongly encouraged”) by rowdy post-conference Alliott Group revelers to participate in some Bourbon Street electric bull riding activities.  Yes, peer pressure is just as strong in middle age!

The FEAR Factor!

Given the location and a few adult beverages to pave the way, a “heck yeah” attitude would certainly have been appropriate; but as the crowds swelled, the music got louder and the odors became quite unfamiliar, the “F” word – FEAR – smacked me straight on!  My mind was swirling with thoughts of:

  • How do I hop on this thing?
  • What if my fall is beyond ungraceful?
  • Will I look absolutely ridiculous?

Just Do It.

As I ran through various unpleasant scenarios as well as some scenes from Urban Cowboy in my head, I began to think about my presentation on B2B Content Marketing.  Specifically, I reflected on my final slide and piece of advice – “Just do it” (complete with the Nike logo).  Why wouldn’t all professionals want to give it a try?  After all, it’s proven to work and the rewards are measurable.  B2B content has the potential to earn the trust of current and prospective customers and engage them on an ongoing basis.  It also feeds those hungry search engines meal after meal, leaving them satisfied and wanting to rank you higher.

In this unusually-framed moment of clarity, I realized that as a B2B marketer, my role expands beyond convincing professionals of the value of Content Marketing or sharing a bullet pointed list of “how to’s.”  My job includes helping my B2B clients and prospects overcome their uneasiness about giving it a try.  Quality content is an art and not a science – it doesn’t come easy to all professionals.  Content marketing also takes some time away from day-to-day activities and enables competitors to get a flavor for a creator’s unique perspective.  If I expected these folks to conquer their fears, shouldn’t I first overcome mine?

Saddling-Up!

The time had come.  I saddled-up, clung for dear life and rode the electric bull for a surprising three minutes to the wild cheers of my Alliott Group friends.  My reward came in the form of some high-fives, unwanted video footage and a few manageable bruises.  It’s always a little scary trying something new but the anticipation is usually much worse than actually doing it.  I hope that the Alliott Group members, as well as other B2B professionals, will cast away their fears to ride the B2B Content Marketing bull!  While there may be a small amount of pain in getting started, I can promise there will be no broken bones – and that’s no bull!!