Previously on Kapowzing: “Entertain. Your highest priority is not to inform”, “Remember your industry is only interesting to you.”, “Have a point of view.”, “Be funny.”, “Use Emotion.”
Now that we’ve all gotten our Sorkin moment out of the way, let’s get back to the other five things you can do to make your brand more interesting. Like age, boredom is a state of mind. No matter your industry, age, demographic, you can be interesting. If they can make milk fun to hear about, you have no excuse.
- Be relevant. Know what the world is talking about and join in. Depending on your audience, Reddit might be a good place to keep a pulse on what the internet is up to. Viewer beware: The internet is a strange place. There’s been a trend for brands to use memes lately. (If you do not know what a meme is, then you shouldn’t be considering this idea at all). If you’re going to do this, please use them right. Nothing bugs us hip folks more than misuse of a meme. Word of caution: do not post your brand/company stuff without some help. It can be an intense community of people that hate marketing. Before you know it your company will end up downvoted and flamed to oblivion. And that stuff shows up in a Google search.
- Be honest. The best stuff comes from the truth. If you’re a bank, that’s fine. Don’t try to be Apple. Know you’re a bank. Know that everyone finds you boring. Here’s the twist though: acknowledge it. It’s perception judo; by pointing out that yes you’re a bank and yes you’re boring you’re now no longer boring. Don’t shy away from what makes your brand your brand or your industry, your industry. Not everyone can be Nike. Not everyone should be.
- Remember the person is smart. Not many philosophical gems can be pulled from Men in Black, but this is one of my favorites: “The person is smart, people are stupid.” As a group, we’re all idiots. If you don’t believe me just go to any subway, baseball game, concert, or internet chat room. Individually we’re the smartest living creators on the planet, together the dolphins are rolling their eyes. A person will get it. If you’re not sure, find a remarkably average friend to test your ideas on.
- Have fun with your competition. You need to go no further than look at the Apple vs. PC stuff. Both have had hits and misses over the years, but the playful ribbing they give each other is a blast to watch. It’s even better for you if your competition doesn’t play along. I’ve never seen this botched so thoroughly than when McDonald's refused Burger King's request for peace. Burger King walked away looking like the guy who brings an extra six pack to a party, while McDonald's walked away looking like the guy who complains that the free beer isn't gluten free. Keep it peaceful, keep it light, but have fun.
- Do the opposite. What’s everyone else doing? Try the inverse of that. It might not always be the best idea, especially when driving. But it’s a good place to start. It’s an easy trick to get out of “the box”. Competition sending junk mail? Send a bag to collect the junk mail (yes you’re still sending junk mail). Competition bugging people with Youtube Pre-Roll ads? Make an ad about how lame those ads are. Geico, for the win. Everyone jumping up and down about the Holidays? KitKat released an ad of nothing. What can you do that’s the exact opposite of everyone else?
Ten is just a start, and a nice pretty number to stop at. I bet we could find one hundred if we worked at it. It all comes down to thinking about what people actually want to hear. Give it a shot. Let us know if we missed anything. Or, better yet, let us know if you tried some these, and how they worked for you. Until next time.
Closest thing I could find to the West Wing ending credits.