I’m sure everyone reading this will be aware of the song “Time To Say Goodbye”. One of the all time classics from opera legend Andrea Bocelli.
Well I was in the car yesterday and it turns out there’s a Jason Derulo remix.
Yep. Not even joking.
So after I’d pulled over to extract the knives from my ears I thought: “Wow- is this really what the world is coming to?”
Every time you turn on the radio, you’re listening to an auto-tuned “dirty beat” remix of one of your favourite songs. Every time you switch on the TV, it’s another reboot of a classic.
The same goes for marketing. With so much noise out there at the moment, it’s so tempting for businesses to ride on the coat tails of what their competitors are doing without developing their own distinct style.
Don’t get me wrong- I fully understand the logic in not changing a winning formula. You don’t have to re-invent the wheel with everything you do. But you do have to:
- Know your audience
- Stick to your values
- Sell feelings, not products
What works for someone else isn’t always going to work for you. Every business is built on it’s own set of values and should have a clear and defined brand personality.
Use competitor methods and case studies as inspiration to improve on the original idea, not as blueprints to be traced. Always aim to add another layer to the story to engage your audience on an emotional level.
Regardless of what industry you operate in, demographics are constantly shifting. Your marketing has to be doing the same to match that shift.
Disney are a perfect example of how to do it right with their remakes of The Lion King, Aladdin etc.
They realised that 80s/90s children raised on these films now have incredible purchasing power, and potentially children of their own. That presented a huge opportunity to tap into their emotional attachment to these films.
However, they understood that you probably wouldn’t get a bunch of self respecting twenty-somethings into a cinema to watch a cartoon. But tweak the format to “live action”, add a bit of grit to the marketing and voila- you’ve now got a room full of sobbing adults paying to watch Mufasa die all over again in Ultra-HD. (P.S still hate you, Scar.)
Another example is Netflix’s Bird Box, which was watched over 45 million times. The film itself was terrible and the plot was predictable- so why was it so popular?
1. It was released exclusively on Netflix on 21st December, a time when 90% of the population are sat on the sofa in their underpants looking for something to watch.
2. The content was meme-bait. People got curious about what all these memes were about so ended up watching the film anyway.
Their timing was spot on and they knew exactly who their audience was.
Ask yourself- what do you know about your target audience?
What makes them happy?
What scares them?
What channels do they use to communicate?
What would make them want to share something with their family/friends?
If you can’t answer those types of questions then you should take a step back and assess whether your current marketing strategy is appropriate for the results you are trying to achieve.
Change your mindset.
Aim to be the person creating the classic, not attempting the remake.
Will you please everyone? No.
Should you care? Absolutely not.
In a sea of uniformity, a tiny slither of originality can be the beacon that sets you apart from your competitors.
If you need a fresh set of eyes to look over your digital strategy in 2019, just drop us a message.
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