When it comes to standing out in today’s cutthroat business world, it can be overwhelming trying to find an effective strategy while still remaining unique. That being said, occasionally some of the most effective solutions to problems are the simplest ones, and the same can be said for building an unforgettable, iconic brand in the marketplace today.
One of these remedies is often overlooked by novices and experts alike: dividing your audience.
Dividing your audience can be delivered in a variety of ways. You can choose to be controversial in your marketing efforts and branding, much like Wendy’s does with their Twitter account (one that jokingly throws insults and jabs at competitors and followers alike). Another way to divide your audience is to “niche down” the target market for your content. For instance, if you’re a health and wellness brand for men, dividing your audience could entail narrowing your focus to being a health and wellness brand for men over the age of 50.
When it comes to branding and marketing, there are a handful of reasons why dividing your audience is so effective. Here they are:
1. Most Brands Are Too Afraid To Take a Risk
To put in plainly, one of the easiest ways to be memorable is to be different. When it comes to producing content, almost all brands out there are too afraid to be different because of the fear of offending members of their audience or potential customers. As a result, there are an endless amount of brands producing content online that’s just plain boring, generic and inauthentic.
Yet, this presents a ripe opportunity for entrepreneurs to stand out simply by speaking specifically to the target audience they want to appeal to. Whether that audience consists of police officers in Kentucky, school teachers in Canada or something else entirely.
2. It Humanizes Your Brand
By dividing your audience, you will also be humanizing your brand. As mentioned above, when you speak in broad terms to a general audience, your brand will come off as robotic. By speaking the way your target audience speaks in everyday conversation on top of thinking the way your target audience thinks, you’ll come off as much more relaxed and human. This will make it easier than ever before to build up a loyal following on social media, your blog and elsewhere.
3. It Filters Out Unfavorable Customers and Fans
By dividing your audience and speaking only to the folks who you want to work with, day in day out, you’ll also be saving yourself from the heartache brought on by unfavorable customers and clients.
Let’s use marketing mogul and entrepreneurial icon, Gary Vaynerchuk, as an example. In his online content, he uses a lot of curse words and acts in a manner many might deem politically incorrect. Some people who watch his videos for the first time may not like these divisive antics. Yet, by putting his true self out there for all to see, he attracts the people who do enjoy his antics. He attracts the people who don’t mind if he curses and the people who curse even more than he does.
There are many business personalities out there who have accomplished just as much or more than Gary Vaynerchuk has, but they most likely don’t have as voracious and loyal of a following as he does. This is all thanks to him being divisive. No matter what industry you’re in, if you stick to your brand and the things that make you unique, you’ll naturally attract like-minded clients with similar values that you hold while simultaneously avoiding clients who would’ve been troublesome in the first place.
4. It Appeals to Human Psychology
Dividing your audience appeals to human psychology in two primary ways. One is based on iconic author and business professor, Robert Cialdini’s Law of Liking, which states if you were given the option of buying a product from two salesmen, you’re much more likely to buy from the one you like more.
This ties directly into the topic of this article. By being unique and speaking specifically to your target audience as opposed to being overly broad, safe and stale in your branding, you’re much more likely to have your loyal fans like you more than your competitors. The truth is this: competition is so high in the marketplace nowadays that people can get the information on a topic from anywhere, so one of the only differentiating factors is whether or not the person consuming the content likes the creator of that content or not.
The other aspect of human psychology being divisive appeals to is one that Matthew D. Lieberman (author of Social and UCLA professor of neuroscience) has studied for years, which is the need for humans to connect with each other. In fact, in Lieberman’s research, he found the need to connect is even more fundamental than their need for shelter or food.
Essentially, in terms of creating diehard customers, building a community is where you need to start, and one of the easiest ways to do that is speak to a very specific target audience by being divisive.
Due to the sheer volume of competition in today’s business world, standing out can certainly be a difficult undertaking. That being said, by dividing your audience and utilizing the tactics laid out in this article, you’ll be positioning yourself masterfully to stand out like a sore thumb in the sea of sameness so common today. Thanks for reading and best of luck.