Can Communicators Learn from A Pop Star?

Admittedly, I am a Taylor Swift fan. (The song Shake It Off is one of my favorite things.) But, I don’t know everything about her. What I do know is that she can teach us about communication.

Stay with me.

I am most interested in how Taylor Swift maintains popularity and success. Because, as a communicator, I want my audience to pay attention to my cause, program, product or business process. I want my cause, program, product or business process to be popular and to succeed.

In the May issue of Vogue, Swift speaks about how to dispel rumors  — in addition to other topics. Swift is quoted like this …

“There are a lot of ways to dispel rumors… if they say you have fake friendships, all you have to do is continue to be there for each other.”

I would like to un-pack this statement a bit more. Now, communicators dispel rumors all the time. If we are successful, our audience actively avoids the rumors saying that we are less than our competition. The audience chooses our cause, program, product or business process.

In the example above, Swift dispels rumors using the following tactics…

  1. She researches – or notices what is being said or written about her.
  2. She decides what image she wants to project.
  3. She acts accordingly.

Kudos to Vogue for unearthing a communications tactic that is very powerful. Let me add this — it makes communication and business sense to research the competition and get a sense of how we are perceived. It is in our power to speak to our audience and gain their attention.

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