WPblab EP101 – It’s okay to have a personality in your marketing with Rick Solari

In this episode, Bridget and Jason are joined by Rick Solari. Bland branding is bad branding. Allow your personality to shine. Let’s chat about taking a different approach than the norm.

Bridget: Don’t be so stuck on your business model that you’re not willing to ‘shift’!

Rick: Media Producer and consultant – helps people spice things up in their brand awareness, social media, videos, etc – teach how to share your true voice and gain more followers along the way!

There’s a lot of people out there who continuously post the same things – very familiar/similar to others in their industry. Rick teaches people to go ‘outside of the box’ and add fun & personality to their marketing efforts.

Find your voice and just speak it – scream it as loud as you can!

Bridget – I always default to “as polite as possible”

Humor is really tricky in this post-modern world – “skin is so thin, it’s a wonder most people don’t have skin cancer”

Pushing boundaries can get you attention but you want to make sure it’s the right kind of attention.  Make sure it doesn’t backfire on you.

Be careful with hashtags and social media campaigns, you have to be prepared for the hecklers.

It’s one thing to get people to talk about you and your brand, but are you getting them to talk about you and behave or ‘take action’ in the way that you want them to?

Bridget: You really have to know your audience.  The danger is that you are being a source of entertainment but there is no benefit coming your way.

If what is happening or is popular/trending in social media makes sense for your brand, jump on that!

Being funny can be really good – it’s not necessarily a bad thing

Torque and ‘Doc Pop’ do a great job with their videos and cartoons


Bridget: One of the reasons I like humor is that it can be a gentler way to communicate a truth.

BrunchBros  – Brunch is a big thing in Miami, FL! They have various different characters like the “business bro” and the “frat bro” and they post memes based around those characters – adds humor and wit to the more typical “food blog” style posts

Bridget: contemplating writing backstories for stock photos!  She loves making up stories about random people at restaurants, public events, etc.  It might be a good way of tricking herself into writing again and would be a great way to show her understanding of people!

There’s a game called ‘memes’ that is similar to that idea with storytelling based on a picture

We’re always pushing to do more, be more, learn more. Sometimes it’s nice to just see something cheery on the internet that makes you smile or laugh.  It might even spark creativity in someone else!

There are limits to how far you should take your humor. Create a pros/cons list – what is the worst thing that can happen if I post this? If you think something is funny, you should try to consider what the opposite reaction could be to that content.

Weigh out the pros/cons – even if it’s completely funny to you, work out how it might be received wrongly by someone else and what would happen – work the cons list and make sure you are comfortable with the possible reactions before you post

If you have a team, try to ping-pong your ideas with a group. If not, bounce it off your good friend and see what they think.

If you can figure out how to quickly jump onto & associate your brand with something that is happening (current events) then that can be social media gold – have to make sure it’s not a sensitive issue though

The biggest hangup with companies, especially bigger ones, is the reluctance to give up control

Make sure if you are going to jump on something that’s trending and bounce off of it, that you do it in a timely manner.  Don’t be the cardboard company that wanted to react to an event that happened 6 weeks ago!

Try creating a google search using boolean operators so that it’s very specific, that way when something actually comes up, you know it’s something worth reacting to

Think about how do you take something boring and turn it into something that sticks?

If you’re a bank, for example, what do you talk about? Talk about stuff that is “a win” for your brand or your customer and use that feature to inject a bit of humor into your marketing.

Southwest is one of Bridget’s favorite airlines.  The flight attendants have a lot of autonomy and get to have a lot of fun with what they do.  She mentioned bad turbulence and made a joke about it on social media during a flight and they replied and then DM’d her back and sent her a gift certificate.

Everything you do in social media is a risk.  There will always be some backlash. There will always be critics.  Take the risk but know what kind of backlash you might get. Go in with eyes wide open.

Jason: If you can be timely (but be sensitive not to push it too far) you can pull off a lot of cool things.

Rick: You want to respond within the hour or within the day depending on what it is and the staying power of the trend.


Tools/Tips of the Week

Rick: huge fan of Mashable.com – they have a shop, including online courses. There is an instagram marketing crash course for entrepreneurs on a huge sale!

Bridget: Had a revelation that Javascript is Algebra and thought maybe she can teach herself! Started Wes Bos Javascript30 but needed more background to get started. Someone recommended FreeCodeCamp and it is SO cool!  On lesson 22 already! Also set up a CodePen account – wants to prove to herself that she can do it!  “We can do anything we want to do, we just have to put our minds to it”; “Say YES to yourself”

Jason: hates Slack, but if you’re going to use it, you need something that will corral it. Franz – you install it and log into all of the services you use to chat with folks, aggregates all of them into one

Show notes contributed by:

Cheryl LaPrade – @yaycheryl

Sherie LaPrade – @heysherie


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11 responses to “WPblab EP101 – It’s okay to have a personality in your marketing with Rick Solari”

  1. WPblab EP101 – It’s okay to have a personality in your marketing with @RickSolari wpwatercooler.com/video/wpblab-e… via @wpwatercooler

  2. Bridget Willard Avatar

    This is going to be fun!

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