Trends: Follow them or buck them?

Opportunity cost in the attention economy
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When it comes to trends, do you follow them or do you buck them? And yes, I said ‘buck’ with a b, no explicit language for this podcast thank you very much.

This is a subject we’ll talk about it in more detail over on The Video and Livestreaming Show later in the week.

Hi, I’m John Lacey and this is Build A Presentation Muscle.

It can be fun to jump onto the cultural zeitgeist, but whether it’s a good idea or not often depends on what the goal of content actually is.

But in this attention economy, many of us are tempted to try our hands at all manner of things in an effort to cut through the noise.

Look, if you’ve listened to this podcast for a hot second you’ll know I’m much more interested in evergreen content than trend chasing but I thought it might be useful to unpack why I feel that way.

Trends date quickly

1. Trends get dated very quickly.

Maybe you’ll start the trend. Maybe you’ll jump onto it very early. But the truth is once you’ve seen 10 Ken meme videos you’ve seen them all. This isn’t necessarily a problem, because so much of social media is ephermal in nature.

But I think it’s worthwhile to think about putting your time into something that might be useful for your audience for a longer period time.

Two wrongs don’t copy right make

2. You don’t generally have the rights to use other people’s copyrighted material, even if something has been uploaded to a particular platform. Because often the uploader didn’t actually have the right to legally upload it in the first place.

Different platforms will have different licensing arrangements with music and sound clips too, so you can’t necessarily always take your TikTok and throw it up as a YouTube Short or vice versa.

You know what you do have control over? Your own copyrighted material. Again, I’d encourage you to spend more time on that.

Don’t neglect the foundations

3. The new and novel can often distract you from mastering the basics. Getting excited about yet another AI program or another Twitter clone may not be as useful as working on your story, honing your craft and connecting with your audience.

Sure, there are opportunities everywhere, but opportunity cost is real.

Now I’m sure my co-host Sam Proof will have much more encouraging to say about trend chasing on The Video and Livestreaming Show, so if you are interested to hear some other views join us for that.

For more information about today’s show, head over to

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