You Say Good-Bye, I Say Hello

Reading through the massive amounts of emails waiting for me from my week and a half off the computer enough to annihilate several thousands of my gray matter particles. Some of the things you, dear readers, write to me are completely astounding. I’m guessing throughout all the written missives, I was missed. In turn, it seems I missed out on some changes in the Hicks’ internet websites as well as the rumored start up of a promotional campaign related newsletter.

Whereas a few of the Taylor Hicks’ related websites have given it up and shut down, another newsletter idea has been broached to help in marketing Taylor Hicks. I found this discussion on the “Official Soul Patrol” site. The goal and purpose of this newsletter described; Join the Marketing Taylor Hicks newsletter! No spam. No email or group conversations. Your email address is not shared with anyone. You will receive one email per week filled with lots of information on how to help market Taylor’s music. This weekly email newsletter is for people who like American Idol winner Taylor Hicks, and want to help market his music. The newsletter is filled with lots of marketing information! To subscribe, send an email to marketingtaylorhicks-subscribe@yahoogroups.com.”

About a dozen folks gathered in that thread to talk about Taylor Hicks and this ‘grassroots’ planned effort of guerilla marketing. This newsletter is to stand, from what I comprehend, as a guideline on better ways to reach out to the mass public to inform and recruit interest in Taylor Hicks and his music.

Taylor Hicks has his compilation CD due to hit the Target shelves on August 12th. Goal one of this group and other Taylor Hicks’ fans, to get folks to buy the CD. Thinking is, if someone buys this CD, they will love it and become stalwart fans. That brings me to the discussion, however muted in this thread for the newsletter. As always there is that Soul Patrol aspect and moniker to contend with, and no matter how it’s phrased if you are not ready to stand up and shout “Soul Patrol” or become a board member, you just ain’t a fan. Not really.

As this poster writes, being content to just post and blog about Taylor Hicks a paltry effort to try and keep his name up and noticed. “Congratulations PBF and whoever else is involved in the creation of this great idea. It’s refreshing to see the fans actually doing something and taking positive steps to help Taylor instead of just posting and blogging about it. It is one thing to talk about doing something while it’s another to actually do something about it as you and other supporters are doing.” Yes, that newsletter will certainly be the cure for the common sales woes. I mean why hasn’t anyone done this previously? hmm. Wait, there was that Modern Whomp Magazine attempt. Interestingly this individual starting the newsletter and that individual with the now defunct magazine effort have something in common…

How well this idea will go over is hard to tell, especially in light of what this newsletter publisher may be dealing with regarding potential associations. One example, one poster was simply having problems just grappling with the grassroots idea, she writes, “Purple, I’m sure you have fans who are interested in this, however, I’m curious and need more information. Who is in charge of this? Who authorized it? What are the goals? I have a lot of questions about it…”

Regarding ‘authorization’ I believe point is missing here, that working under the ‘grassroots’ ideology puts aside any need for any sort of authorization. As far as ‘goals’ I think it’s self evident what the ‘goals’ are intended.

Then there is this happy poster who simply decides to write in song, “Love lifts us up where we belong….” I like them, short, simple and random. One other was concerned she was knocking but she couldn’t get in to the membership area, “Am I one of the ones floating around out there? I sent my request to join.”

Where’s the ‘net to reel her in?

Apparently something wandered amiss as one of the moderators wrote, and in context it sounds more random than the singing poster, “Lets stick to the topic of this thread.

ANYONE having personal issues with who is saying what on other blogs, needs to take this to either PM or Email, NOT on the boards.”

I went back to reread and did not see anyplace in which anyone mentioned anything untoward or out of place…that was followed with the non-fan discourse, “Why would “nonfans” want to join to help Taylor ?? Is it just Ideas in general to help different artists or just for Taylor?”

Which was answered with “By “non fans” I mean people who are not part of the sp/fan boards.”

That brings me back to circle on the fan/non-fan issue. “The majority of people who voted for Taylor have lost track of him or have ceased to be as enamored as they initially were. This is a way to learn how to get these people back into the Taylor Hicks camp.”

That creates pause; consider the ways that many of Taylor Hicks’ current on-line fans behave. I mean, you can’t joke around about Mr. Hicks, you can’t question anything he does, anything he has said, you must always present a completely over the top fan aspect or you are accosted, insulted, and labeled a non-fan. Hopefully the newsletter will aide in how you can actually cultivate and gather fans rather than run them off.

Fuel for thought, if someone disagrees with you and you have a goal to bring them over to your viewpoint, what is the most effective manner of approach? Certainly you catch more flies with sugar than vinegar, but many of the fans only know vinegar, sugar the last thing they consider.

Many in this fan base of Taylor Hicks, who label themselves Soul Patrol, are of the opinion that if you don’t fall in line and think and act like they do you should be beaten bloody and cast onto a teeming ant pile. Seriously, there are some rabid and vicious members of this base that have turned away many a fan from fear of what steaming pile they’re stepping into. I have folks who read me regularly, email me often but won’t post – certainly not with their usual on-line names for fear of retribution or worse. It’s silly yet true. Association with me likened to hanging with the Devil himself because I dare to speak my opinions and my mind regardless of the common accepted theories of thought regarding Taylor Hicks. To joke, to question equals ‘smearing the man’s name’ and other nonsensical bullshit that clogs up the rational for even wanting to show support for the man.

Lest you think I’m trying to claim any originality for this thought, this poster in the thread proves there are many who think this way, “I’m sure Taylor has lots of supporters out there who prefer not to be involved in board politics. I can’t say that I blame them.”

So will this newsletter lend any insight, change anything or alter the current Taylor Hicks on-line culture? From my stand point, I seriously doubt it.

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7 Responses to You Say Good-Bye, I Say Hello

  1. willpen says:

    Standing on my chair and applauding you wildly, from one terribly bad and mean Taylor Hicks Fan to another. There is a part of the “Soul Patrol” that has a self possessing quality about them. They are the beginning and the end with no room for anyone in between. How sad for Taylor that they have decided how he wants his career to be run.

    Great blog Sunny. You are going on my favorite list.

  2. spinshack says:

    Thank you willpen, but beware, there are many who don’t like me or understand my humor. I’m glad I found you too, you’re a very good writer.

  3. rosie says:

    All Taylor needs to do is to record a radio friendly hit song to bring back his name and fame. Those of us that blog, read blogs and keep track of his career are already big fans. A dozen fans trying to market him is not going to work. Grease has brought him some new attention and perhaps a few new fans. On idol Taylor was smart choosing mostly songs that everyone knew and which he knew he could sing well. People loved not only his voice, but his enthusiam, personality, and took note of his charisma. If I recall, right after he won fans went on and on about how great his pre idol self written music was, and said that was the real Taylor. Well he was unable to sell himself or that music he sang and or wrote pre Idol. What he sang on Idol was more mainstream, so I guess I didn’t get why so many were saying wait til they hear the pre idol Taylor. I enjoy him singing almost anything in concert. Now so many seem to believe that early works will sell well and put him on the charts, whereas Somehow is to me the best of the bunch , and the only one with a chance to get picked up. There were about 5 radio friendly song on the Taylor Hicks cd, and who knows what happened with that. There was no early single and a lot of other strange things with that whole mess. It will be interesting to see what he chooses for the next cd. If there are a few good mainstream type songs, he won’t need any marketing, soul patrol, or otherwise.

  4. spinshack says:

    Very true what you say rosie. Nice summation, excellent rationale and points made.

  5. PurpleButterflies says:

    Is it safe to enter the Spin Shack? lol I respect your right to voice your opinion, and hope you will do the same. The newsletter is just a compilation of ideas on how to help promote Taylor’s music, with some fun projects added in. There are people in the fan base who have no motives other than to see Taylor go far in his career, and want to do what they can to help promote him. They don’t care who he is dating, what color shirt he wore, or where he was the day before yesterday. It’s okay to try and do something to help. Street teams have been around for a while and they’re something that some people enjoy participating in. People feel like they are doing something to help, and they are. There is power in word of mouth. The newsletter is a Yahoo group. People can join or drop out at any time. But I think it’s something positive to offer those fans who are tired of reading/hearing about all the fan club drama and want to get back to doing something productive to help raise CD sales.

  6. spinshack says:

    Of course it’s safe to enter the Spinshack; at least until the Fanatics catch wind you’ve come here. lol I agree there is power in word of mouth, that’s why I write. The written word one of the most intense and powerful tools available to man. The words, the styling of the words, show your mind, carry your thoughts, carry your power to the world like a bird on the wind.

    The real thing that will raise those CD sales – if the radio will pick up some tunes, if the mass public will buy it. The Soul Patrol isn’t as big as it once was. Too for the folks planning to buy dozens of copies themselves, sure that is better than buying one or two, certainly, but it’s a small time impact, with the exception of their checkbook.

    Bottom line he needs radio play. Calling stations always a good ploy but seldom effective. Where I am we really don’t have many of those independent stations any longer, but in smaller towns, areas they might. Universities often have their own stations. Those independents always a good place to start. That’s grassroots.

    Been listening to Uncle Shag this a.m. he had one of Taylor’s songs on today, one of my favorites from the “Early Works”, “West Texas Sky”. To listen to Uncle Shag, go here. It’s a nice set overall.

  7. PurpleButterflies says:

    I appreciate your kind response, Sunny. Thank you for that, and thank you also for allowing me to respond regarding the newsletter. I do agree with you that radio play is very important, and I hope that Taylor’s music does find it’s way on the radio. Thank you again.

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