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Now is the time to embrace your weird
on September 21, 2011
Seth Godin's latest is a little book with big ideas about how to live your life. For marketers and business owners, it is also a wakeup call for how to reach buyers of your products and services.
Seth argues that the one-size-fits-all mass market is dead. But you know that already because you probably don't listen to top 40 radio or watch the evening news. This idea of the end of "normal" is essential to work because if you're selling ads at a top 40 station, work probably isn't much fun these days. Embrace the weird and it can be!
I love this quote from the book: "The epic battle of our generation is between the status quo of mass and the never-ceasing tide of weird."
Weirdness takes many forms. When everyone else is carrying nylon computer bags and sporty backpacks, weird people insist on an "old-fashioned" leather briefcase (guilty). Many people think it is weird to go to over 50 Grateful Dead concerts and own recordings of hundreds of their concerts (also guilty).
Is it weird to spend six hours on a beautiful Saturday afternoon in a dingy rec room playing Dungeons and Dragons? To collect chewing gum wrappers and own over 2,000, with examples from over 50 countries? To read instead of watching television? To ride a bike instead of driving?
The weird is us. And the weird is you. (What would they think if they knew?!).
In other words, weirdness is a huge market. I'd argue that unless you sell a commodity product - like paperclips - that you need to embrace the weird buyer in your marketing efforts. Heck, there are animal shaped paperclips and colored paperclips and huge paperclips so even commodities can be marketed to the weird.
Mass = Normal. Weird = Rich.
You can read "We Are All Weird" in an hour. Or savor the book in small bites over a day (as I did). It is an important book with a very simple idea. Yet so far, only true weirdos really understand the implication of these ideas for life and work.
Now is the time to embrace your weird.