Hot take—the algorithms are breaking our brains! At least, that’s what YouTuber MatPat suggests in a recent video that resonated with me.
You see, before we each had personalized feeds on every platform, people were more or less tuning in for the same cultural events. The series finale of M*A*S*H had over one hundred million viewers, and seventy-six million people watched the Seinfeld finale. That’s crazy!
Is losing this connection with one another contributing to the loneliness epidemic in some way?
I brought this up in my Unstuck newsletter because it’s an important topic. (If you haven’t already, subscribe to get my weekly 5-minute read on what’s working for creator entrepreneurs just like you, absolutely free!)
So, what can we do as leaders and creators to bring our people together?
As you know, this is the focus at SPI with the online communities we’re running. But I want to help you do something similar for your audience. I want you to be the person who takes a stand in your space and creates an opportunity for connection.
Listen in on today’s session for ideas on how and where to start!
SPI 750: Why You Have to Bring People Together
Announcer: You’re listening to the Smart Passive Income Podcast, a proud member of the Entrepreneur Podcast Network, a show that’s all about working hard now, so you can sit back and reap the benefits later. And now your host, he’s only four hundred episodes into the One Piece anime. Basically, he’s not even halfway through. Pat Flynn. First of all, happy New Year once again.
Pat Flynn: This is the second Friday episode of 2024, and I wanna reference something that I shared right before the new year started. I shared this on the Unstuck newsletter. If you have not yet subscribed to the Unstuck newsletter, I recommend that you get unstuck. See what I did there? By going to SmartPassiveIncome.com/unstuck.
And every week, I deliver either a thought or a story or something that’ll help you get unstuck from where you’re at. And in one of the emails that I sent out sort of right after Christmas, It was called Your People, or the subject line was Your People. And it references a YouTube video that I watched of Really great YouTuber. His name is MatPat, which is kinda funny because the CEO of SPI Media is Matt, and I am Pat, MatPat. But it’s a different MatPat.
It’s not us two. It’s this guy, MatPat, who has a number of different YouTube channels. One is called Game Theory, About video games and theories about video games. Another one is called The Film Theorists. Another one is called Food Theorists.
And I think the other one is Game Theorists. Right? So, anyway, in the Film Theorists channel that he has, he’s really good at coming up with these theories and using data and And what is happening to prove them? And, you know, they’re not always factual, but they’re really, really good. Okay?
And then he came up with this video, And it was all about how YouTube and Netflix and TikTok and Instagram Reels and Shorts On one hand, it’s pretty amazing. Right? They offer us personalized videos. Our feeds are completely different. Your feed is completely different than my feed is completely different than Your partner’s feed is completely different than your kids’ feed.
We’re all being served different things, and it’s All based on, of course, our search history, our likes, what we’ve previously watched, what we’ve previously skipped. All those kinds of things matter in terms of what these algorithms feed us. And on one hand, it’s great. Right? Because it’s like, okay.
Well, we’re getting more stuff that we want to see, or sometimes it’s scary how well these things understand what it is that we wanna see. It’s stuff that we wouldn’t have even searched for, but because it is showing up on our feed, we watch it. And on the other hand, because your feed is different than my feed, If I have something that I watch that I’m interested in and, again, I’m not just talking about social media. I mean, our Netflix feeds are different as well. And I do recommend you check out this video on the Film Theorists channel.
Because our feeds are different, We can’t talk about those things together, not on a level as if we had both watched those things. I mean, there are Still some things in this world today that are world events. And even then, things related to those world events are fed differently to us. But Let’s say Stranger Things. Right?
The the season four finale, those are things that the world can talk about, or the Super Bowl. Right? But MatPat brought forth this idea that before the age of the Internet, there were way more things that people could talk about together and as a community, come together to discuss. For example, the ending of the show Seinfeld, seventy five million people watched that. The ending of the show MASH, over hundred million people watched that and then talked about it the next day at work and then were able to share their thoughts about it and to be sad together because that show ended.
Whereas, I just finished a season of One Piece. Well, I can go to other people who I know enjoy One Piece and talk to them about it, but more than likely, I can’t talk to you about that particular season of One Piece. And even if you’ve seen One Piece and maybe you’re further ahead in the One Piece anime that I am, I might be worried that you might reveal something that I hadn’t been shared yet because I’m watching this stuff on demand in my own time versus before things being fed to us all at the same time. And the theory here being this is creating or adding to the epidemic of loneliness. Now whether you believe that this theory is correct or not, this idea that, well, it’s because we’re not all watching the same things anymore.
I mean, you have to believe That because of that, we are not able to connect on such manners anymore. We have to find other things to connect with. But because those things aren’t there, it’s, you know, it’s it’s the the water cooler talk is a little bit different. And whether you believe that or not I mean, the truth is there is a loneliness epidemic out there. There’s a minister of loneliness in Great Britain.
There is a known loneliness epidemic in Japan, and surveys show that more than half of Americans are lonely. That’s scary. And, of course, the Internet has not helped. World events have not helped. Just it’s it’s it’s lonely out there.
And in order to not feel lonely, you gotta find people where You feel like you can connect, where you have something to talk about, a shared common interest, similar goals, similar values just a community. That’s how you don’t feel lonely anymore. It’s inherent. It’s it’s innate in our bodies and in our minds to want to feel like we belong to something. And guess what I talked about in my book, Superfans?
The idea that we as leaders, we as creators can be the ones to connect and step up and and connect our audience together, to be the one who steps forth to create those interconnections between people In your audience. There are people listening to your podcast, there are people who are watching your videos, there are people who are reading your newsletter who don’t know that the other person exists. What if they did know that they existed? How much more joy might they have?
How much more connection might they have? How much more of a sense of belonging will they have to what it is that you’re offering and teaching and the message that you’re sharing, and how much more of an escape can that offer to the things outside of that that are Bothering them. That do make them feel lonely. They that do make them feel disconnected. And I want to just share this with you here at the beginning of the year, And I’m very, very spicy on this manner.
You have to be thinking about how you can bring your people together. You have to be thinking about how you can build a community with the brand that you have. Even if that community is just five people, five clients that you might have, how might you bring those five clients together? Maybe you’re in a position to be able to surprise and delight and fly them all out And then have them introduce themselves to each other, meet each other. What value that would provide?
They’re all learning from you if you are their coach. What value would it be to see what each other’s experiences would be, and what’s the likelihood that those people would stick around with you because of that offering? Not just the offering of going to fly somewhere, but to meet other people like them. Maybe you’re not in a position to do that, but you are in a position to create an online community, a space, a safe space for people to come together who share the same values, share the same goals, Who have the ability to connect with one another because you’ve been able to put that together. I’ve been doing this since two 2013.
When I started going to events, I said, what can I do to enable my fans to meet each other? So I went to Saint Louis, And I spoke at FinCon in 2013. And at St. Louis, I rented out a restaurant, and I brought people together. We had some pizza.
We had some beer. But most of all, they found each other. In Vegas in two 2015, myself, Chris Ducker, and Cliff Ravenscraft came together. We put our money together to run out a buffet to allow for our fans together to meet each other. We had over a hundred and fifty people there, if I remember correctly, I still remember the the pictures.
I can’t show them to you on the podcast, but just imagine a bunch of people coming together smiling because they found each other. They found They’re people. And I remember at one point and I’ve shared this story before, but if you haven’t heard of it or heard this story before. You’ll you’ll get to gist very quickly here. At that pizza party in Saint Louis, I was doing my rounds.
I was trying to say hello and thank you to everybody. And At the end of the night, we were all walking back to the venue where the event was gonna be at. It was just a quarter mile stroll. And on the way, I saw that there was a woman walking with us who I hadn’t even seen all night, and I felt really bad. I said, oh, no.
I hadn’t been able to chat with her, so let me go introduce myself. So as we were walking back, I said, hey. And I saw her name tag because we have name tags. I said, hey, Jennifer. I’m sorry that I wasn’t able to connect connect with you tonight.
Maybe we can chat in the hotel lobby or something, and I’d love to get to know you more. And she said, Pat, it’s okay, and please don’t take offense to this, but I’m not here to see you. I didn’t come here tonight to see you. And at first, I was taken aback. Right?
I was like, no. I what are you talking about? Like, I set this thing up, like, to meet and greet the fans. And she said something that I’ll never forget. She said, Pat, I hear your voice every single day on my podcast she listened to, but I never get a chance to meet people like me.
And, I guess, from wherever she was from, she didn’t have other entrepreneurs to talk to. So she spent the entire evening going around like I was and meeting as many people as possible. And she said she’s met some people who she’s gonna connect with at the event. She’s met some people who were pretty close by to where she lived that she was gonna meet up in person after the event was over, and that taught me the power of connecting your people together. And I I just wanted to share this story with you and bring back this thing that I shared in my newsletter.
And you probably read this newsletter, of course, if you are subscribed to the Unstuck newsletter already. And, hopefully, hearing this story in a little bit more depth behind it, it inspires you to think of different ways. And, again, it doesn’t have to be difficult. If this were easy, What would it look like? How might you be able to bring some of your people together to find each other?
And when you do that and when you facilitate and when make sure it’s a safe space just like what we’re doing at SPI and SPI Pro and All Access Pass. I mean, big shout out to our CX team, our customer experience and community experience team, because they’re seriously creating a space here at SPI that is unlike anything else. And people have shown up. They’ve become vulnerable. They’ve shared the things that they need help with, and they’re getting the help that they need.
And that’s just I just love what we’ve done here. The the business model of community is the future, and this is why we have skated to where the puck where it is now. And we wanna lead by example. We don’t just talk the talk. We walk the walk here at SPI.
So I want you to walk the walk with your community and bring them together. Go on a walk with them. Anyway, I appreciate you so much for being here at SPI. Thank you for your support. And if you’ve already been a part of the community, amazing.
If not, You know, we have a lot of opportunities for you to get involved, especially this month. We got a workshop happening in the All Access Pass very soon called Fix Your Funnel. We’re gonna be doing the All Access Pass accelerator where you can join other existing podcasters to grow your show, scale, to automate, to hire, To turn it into a profitable podcast in business. So if that’s of interest to you, check out the All Access Pass, SmartPassiveIncome.com/allaccess. Anyway, I appreciate the access that you’ve given me to your ears, and I look forward to serving you in the next episodes.
Until then, peace out, and hit that subscribe button if you haven’t already. Cheers.
Thanks for listening to the Smart Passive Income Podcast at SmartPassiveIncome.com. I’m your host, Pat Flynn. Our senior producer is David Grabowski. Our series producer is Paul Grigoras, and our executive producer is Matt Gartland. Sound editing by Duncan Brown. The Smart Passive Income Podcast is a production of SPI Media. We’ll catch you in the next session.