Understand How To Become Tribe With Your Customers

Who Are You People?

If you’re not sure where to start gathering real insights, start by imagining how your customer could be the hero of your brand story. Data is fantastic — I’m a big fan — but intuition also plays a role in understanding how to become “tribe” with your audience.

Ask yourself… How well do I know my audience?  Have I walked the consumer journey in their shoes? What content format do they prefer? How much time of their day is spent online? What is their decision making process? What values really drive them to take action? How are they experiencing my brand from first impression through conversion?

We’ve all heard that you become more like the people you surround yourself with (your tribe.) Truth. We also become more like the products we adopt and use frequently. Just think about the ways technology has changed our communication and connection habits. Millennials are on to this trend and very much align themselves with brand values before engaging in any social sharing actions. Gen Z promises to be even more conscious of brand stability and trust metrics. So, do your consumers want to be like you? Do they trust you? Are you tribe?

By having the correct audience insights and prioritizing your consumer experience, you think more like someone in a relationship with a human being, rather than a company marketing to a consumer. And when you’re in a healthy relationship, you communicate rather than talk at each other. You build each other up. You make each other’s lives better. You respect each other. In short, you become a part of each other’s tribe and you both like it that way.

Give Your Tribe What They Want

I’ll be frank, the only people who care about your KPIs are the people who have a financial, vested interest in seeing your company succeed. That’s not a bad thing! But here’s the deal, your consumers really don’t care if you brought 23 new products to market this year, they only care if your product(s) made their life better.

On top of not caring about your success metrics, they also don’t really want to hear about how awesome you are. I know! Crazy Talk! But they do want to hear about stories where your tribe became heroes (and you just happened to play a major supporting role.)

The consumer who sticks with you and evangelizes for you is the one who knows that you make their life better and you enable them to be a hero. If you want to see your ROI metrics skyrocket and your long-term user base grow, change your marketing story to showcase your user as the hero of your brand story. When your user has a “That’s me!” moment, you take the first steps to becoming part of their tribe.

In simplified real life terms… think about it like this: You go on a date. Your date talks about their radical awesomeness, their unrelated interests, and all their self-improvement projects all night long. Your date then tells you what an amazing time they’ve had (talking about themselves) and wants to go out with you again so they can tell you more. Oh, and you’re paying for the date, by the way. Do you go on date #2? I thought not. But marketers and advertisers act like bad dates time and time again by flooding channels with self-congratulatory, irrelevant awesome talk.

Don’t be a bad date. Get into the conversation and show someone how they can be a hero too.


About the Author Kelli Lawless

In everything I do, I believe in growing human connection and extending a sense of belonging. I build meaningful connection by nurturing conversations that are authentic, valuable, and relevant. In some circles, what I do is called content or experiential marketing. I just call it a great way to bring people together.
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