If you missed it, Ricky Gervais hosted the Golden Globes again the other day.
Whether you did catch it, or you’ve read about it since, if you’ve ever seen anything Gervais has done before, you won’t be surprised about the way the comedian chose to approach his fourth presenting gig at one of America’s most important showbiz events.
He was offensive. Of course he was.
There were jokes about Bruce/Caitlyn Jenner, the gender pay gap and Roman Polanski, as Gervais did what he does best – polarise his audience.
Some people thought he was brilliant. Others thought he was despicable.
And whatever your feelings on Ricky Gervais, there’s a big lesson for all of us to learn here:
Your business is NOT for everyone. And if it appeals to the people that you want to do business with, then it really doesn’t matter what other people think.
For die-hard fans of Gervais, his controversial jokes at the Golden Globes will have only served to develop their relationship with him.
For people who aren’t fans of Gervais, the chances are that the jokes will have alienated them further.
But the point is that Gervais only cares about the first category. The script was written for them. They’re the people who watch his films and shows, buy his books and download his podcasts. Not the second group.
When you’re marketing your business, as in really properly marketing it, repelling some people is unavoidable, because not everyone is the right customer for you.
As you create a marketing piece, you should be thinking about what will appeal most to YOUR market – that’s what’s going to give you the best results.
Look at the way Yorkie has been marketed for the last 10 years. When their ‘not for girls’ campaign was first launched there was uproar, but sales of the bar went up 30% in the first 12 weeks.
But remember this isn’t about trying to create marketing that offends; that shouldn’t be the goal here.
It’s about creating marketing that appeals directly to the type of customer that you want to attract, and not worrying about pissing off people who aren’t your customer.
Gervais is a great example. He could water down his comedy, making it less offensive, but then his fans wouldn’t respond as positively to it, meaning that he would, over time, become less successful.
Once you’ve got a well-defined market, and you know how to market to them, just market to THEM, not anyone else. You might think you can appeal to everyone, but history says you can’t.