Finding the people that want to know you

When watching, again, Seth Godin’s TED talk  about his bestselling book Purple Cow, then Tribes: We need you to lead us, I was again struck by the clear simple message. Yet, in practice, it’s not so simple.

The idea is to reject mass marketing. It’s old news. Now, you need think about finding the people that really care about what you are doing and talk to them. They will talk to others, and the idea will spread because you have enlisted the help of people who ‘get’ what you do, your ‘tribe’.

As Trish Weston puts it in her piece for Flying Solo:

According to some, you are doomed in business unless you find your niche. I began crafting and re-crafting my Who and What and riding endless elevators, having very brief conversations with strangers, trying to find my niche.

It wasn’t working. Everything I came up with felt really fake or incomplete, and then my mate KG asked me “Well, who are your people?”

That one question floored me. I immediately knew who I needed to be working with. I could see them, I knew what kept them awake at night, I knew how I could help them.


Great, okay, so how to do find your people?

First, ask yourself a few questions like – who is most likely to buy what you do? Who needs more information about something you know about? What sort of person are they eg where do they live, what’s their family structure, where do they work?

Once you build up this sort of picture, you then need to think about how you can get the message to them. Are there websites they go to, do they use social media and what types, are there groups they gather in like knitting circles, car clubs or sporting teams?

Then you can look at opportunities to tell people what you do through those channels. Can you sponsor the little athletics club in your area, should you have a stand at the next exhibition, do you need to pitch an article to this magazine?

It’s hard work, it needs constant reviewing, but it is what helps businesses achieve real results.

Where is your tribe hanging out, can you create a new place for them to hang out (like your facebook page, or your store)? What do they want to know about, hear or do more of? How are you going to be their ‘leader’?


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