GoPro print ad: “Footage for your friends who didn’t have the balls.”
Overheard at an Apple store: “I bought a MacBook Air…. actually I feel a little like a rebel. I’ve worked in corporate all my life and always used a Dell. Now I’m off on my own and I really wanted an Apple computer; I’ve always wanted an Apple computer”, says a workshop student. “To rebels!” cheers the Apple workshop instructor.
Not for everyone
What is interesting about all of these communications is they are not meant for everyone. Not everyone wants to hear them. Not everyone even understands them. In some cases they are even offensive to some.
The steak house is certainly not talking to vegans, or to people who celebrate special occasions at home. They are speaking to people who celebrate special occasions with wine and a rare steak. This restaurant knows who loves them the most.
The same can be said of GoPro and each employee of Apple. They know who loves the brand, the products, the company the most. Look at any fast growing, value-offering organization (whether for-profit or not) and we find that they all know who loves them the most.
Knowing who loves you the most is an imperative for any organization in growth mode. Knowing who loves you the most is a great start. For sure, it takes some work to get to this point. But it is just the start.
Commit to serving only some
The harder part is the second step, committing to develop marketing, strategies and innovations for just this group. Which means we are forced to exclude somebody, maybe many somebodies. As association professionals we feel compelled to be all inclusive. We think the more the merrier. This is wrong. Member value declines as generalness increases. This may seem counter-intuitive but member value increases when we serve only those who love us the most.