My friends, it’s Friday. I’ve got a great Seinfeld episode lined up for you today. Remember the episodes with Keith Hernandez (the “second spitter” theory done to the likes of JFK the movie)? Well, in today’s Seinfeld on Marketing, Jerry and George spot Keith for the first time:
GEORGE: Wow, Keith Hernandez! He’s such a great player.
JERRY: Yeah, he’s a real smart guy too. He’s a Civil War buff.
GEORGE: I’d love to be a Civil War buff. What do you have to do to be a buff?
JERRY: …Well sleeping less than 18 hours a day would be a start.
George being a buff. You know, unless it’s how to sleep under your desk at work and not get caught or how to use an alias (Art Vandaley) without revealing your true pathetic self, I’m just not seeing George being a buff.
Maybe George is not the best “buff” example, but there are many out there – take for example this guy who is a Photshop buff and “untoons” the likes of Jessica Rabbit, Homer Simpson and Mario (you’ve got to see it to believe it).
A buff for your product or business is the holy grail of every marketer. We’d die for fans, evangelists and basically those willing to brave the elements to camp out for the chance to be first to get their hands on our stuff. Of course, this is much easier said then done. But I think the best chance you have to become “buff worthy” comes in these five F’s:
- Fit. You must create something that actually fits my ideals, desires and situation. If I see no fit, I will either ignore you or place you in the recesses of my mind until a possible future fit (but most minds are unreliable and I will most likely just forget about you).
- Flagrant. One definition of flagrant is “obviously inconsistent from the norm.” My experience with you must be unmistakably different from anything else to stand apart from the noise of the status quo. Something “good enough” rarely gets talked about. Flagrant products -whether they are much better or much worse from the norm – get most of the attention. Hopefully you reside in “much better” camp.
- Frictionless. My experience with your product or service must be easy to understand, adopt and spread. If I run into a friend after she has lost 50 pounds, her weight loss is easily understood and transmitted. In addition to obvious visuals (weight loss, tattoos, fan t-shirts), remember that digital is most always slipperier than anything physical.
- Forum. To truly optimize your buff quotient, I must have a place to talk about the greatness that is you. This could be a fan club, a blog or website, a conference, or some other network. If the forum is started by your company, it must include open, two-way conversations free from dilution and filtration.
- Feedback. If you seek out, listen to and respond to my feedback then I am more apt to become a buff. Let me participate in the innovation and improvement process and I’ll love you all the more.
[Sideshow fun: Here are two time wasters (but well worth it!) having to do with Seinfeld – a Seinfeld/Bachelor mashup and now you can watch full length episodes of Seinfeld courtesy of TBS!. ]