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Yep, you're right. Pablo Picasso said it. And it still applies today. Even in the realm of word of mouth marketing.


We've seen it happen. A corporate giant wants their "own" Facebook. Or MySpace. Or whatever the flavor of the month is. And so they copy it, trying to emulate some successful online community or face-to-face word of mouth tool. But then it fails. Big time. And they scratch their heads and abandon any non-traditional efforts claiming that they just don't work.
So what's the difference between copying and stealing? When you copy, you're trying to be like something or someone else. When you steal, you make it your own. Did you hear that? You make it your own. And when you make something your own, it becomes part of who you are. You internalize it.
We've seen this happen, too. And many times, the program that is "stolen" is improved upon because the company owns it. It becomes part of their DNA. It's much more than a tactic or a means to an end. It becomes a part of the very brand.
So before you decide to copy whatever social community tools are hot this month, first take a look inside and make sure you're ready to own it. If it's right for you and you can improve on it then steal away. You might just create the next thing everyone else will try to copy.

Continue reading "'Good artists copy, great artists steal.'" ... Read the full article

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Spike Jones

Firestarter
Brains on Fire

Spike Jones hails from the Lone Star state, where they brainwash you at an early age to take pride in who you are and where you're from (and they sure got a hold of him). After graduating from Baylor University with a Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Studies and a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism, he bounced around the country and finally landed in the Southeast over at the naming and identity company of Brains on Fire (www.brainsonfire.com).

He began his career there as a copywriter, crafting compelling stories for national and international clients. And while Spike still enjoys wordsmithing, he is now involved on the creative strategy side of the business from insight to the creation of word of mouth movements to building regional and national identities for companies across many industries. Brands he’s helped strengthen include BMW, Rawlings Sporting Goods, Dagger Kayaks, Don Pablo’s Mexican Restaurants, Fiskars Brands, Yakima, Perception Kayaks and Rage Against the Haze (South Carolina’s youth-led anti-tobacco movement).

Spike has been a speaker at national and local events and is the main contributor to the Brains on Fire group blog (www.brainsonfire.com/blog), which discusses current naming, identity and word of mouth issues and trends. It is also among the top read and resourced blogs in the marketing industry

When he’s not around his favorite people in the world (his fellow Brains on Fire-mates) or traveling around the country, you can find Spike out for a run flanked by his 100 lb. Chocolate lab, Mud.

Contact info:
Brains on Fire
148 River Street, Suite 100
Greenville, SC 29601
864.676.9663

web: brainsonfire.com
blog: brainsonfire.com/blog
that fancy electronic mail: spike@brainsonfire.com

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