We are always telling clients that a good story or good piece of writing is worth sharing over and over. That’s especially true as the public attention span telescopes down to whatever got tweeted last.

So it is in that spirit I share a brief piece I wrote in 2009 for a Seth Godin compilation he called “What Matters Now.” I thought i had gotten it right then, and i still do. You can download the entire ebook for free.


What Would Buddha Tweet?

Here is our paradox: We have never had more communications tools at our disposal, and yet we have never been less effective at communicating.

It’s human nature to want the shiny new things. The amateur golfer thinks that with that new titanium driver she’ll be as good as Tiger Woods. And we believe that social marketing will magically transform our mediocre messages into the word of God.

Like all good Buddhists, I believe that when things become chaotic and complicated, it becomes ever more urgent to cut through the noise, simplify and hone in on what really matters.

Here are three timeless principles of good cause-related communications that will be as important in ten years as they are today: heart, simplicity, and story.

  •  Heart – engage your community from a place of passion and compassion. Facts matter less.
  •  Simplicity – if you can’t tell your brand story to a 9-year-old it’s no good.
  •  Story – the root of all: “Millions survive without love or home, almost none in silence; the opposite of silence leads quickly to narrative, and the sound of story is the dominant sound of our lives…” — Reynolds Price