Knowing your ‘who’ is a skill. Being brave about who you do your best work for is also a skill.
Too many people fail to realise that knowing your ‘who’ doesn’t limit you, in fact it gives you a solid foundation.
Your ‘who’ is a person, not necessarily limited to one sector. Many companies have been taught that they need to ‘niche down’ but unfortunately that strategy failed during the pandemic. Understanding your ‘who’ as a type of person is a smarter approach. Because this ‘type’ of person will also age and change and so their needs will change over time, it’s about finding the entry point and then serving them for longer.
Now, getting your ‘who’ right will naturally attract the right person. For example, we prefer certain types of people, blonde or brunette, black or white when it comes to finding a mate. We might surprise ourselves, but generally speaking, we’re more inclined to seek a date based on our preference.
And then there’s cars… We may have a car that we really want or that works for us. Our preference will be around model, colour or speed. What doesn’t change is that the vast majority of us need a car to get from A to B. But the things we take for granted such as the availability of diesel or petrol may change… or electric, or even the circumstances that allow us to drive, such as tolls and charges.
These factors enable us to tighten our ‘who’ without niching down so tight as to leave us wide open to failure. What we need to have is a deeper understanding of who we are dealing with in order to engage.
Humans change. They change their mind, their circumstances, and their impulses. They decide that the car for them is a sports car and then as they grow older the question of family arises. That sports car for most will not be a long-term plan, and so life changes their options.
Smart car manufacturers have caught onto this and rather than see ONE car sale they look to create loyalty to the brand by providing multiple options to ensure that a client will buy 5-10 cars over a 20-year period. So they get their niche to a point but they understand that their type of person will grow and change with brand.
In essence, they are not looking for a one-sale deal, they are looking at a partnership that lasts. That is a fundamental shift in marketing and brand build.
That is why you are seeing sports car brands make a switch to SUVs as part of the lineup. Aston Martin to Lamborghini have all done the same. Yes, a luxury brand and a demographic but rather than market just on ‘I want a sports car’ and losing customers to BMW they are saying, ‘Stay with us and have a bigger car’.
Think Lexus, they have multiple entry points and the range of cars to do just that. You can spend top-end sports car but also get a salon or SUV.
The brand fits around the changing demographic rather than remaining fixed around a moment of time in their lives.
That is the power of understanding that your audience grows up. Now, imagine providing a service or product that appears to be for only a few years BUT actually can catch people when life changes.
Think about children. Pampers are something kids eventually grow out of. You only need them for a season, but often parent(s) have more than one child. So a 2-year window could actually mean a 2-6 one based on 2.5 children. Moreover, their friendship circle may also be having children, so a gift audience becomes part of the family of products. Furthermore, there is a whole market for adults, from childbirth to menopausal women and even older age men and women suffering with physical ailments and changes.
So, a powerful brand knows that niching is an entry point and ultimately we need multiple entry points.
For Cre8ion we want to work with purposeful people. We work with start-ups that scale and, as this happens, their needs change. We can grow with them. Some of our clients have been with us for many years as their needs have changed and grown with technology.
When we approach a client it isn’t about the ‘one-time deal’ of getting a website created (though of course that happens) but more about growing a brand beyond a single transaction to transformational activity.
Transformational brands go beyond a few years. That is why we work with the type of people who want to see the impact over income. It’s not because we have issues with money, but rather that impact-led companies are seeing things longer term.
There are two ways to create your future narrative and we essentially double down on the second.
- You follow a road map.
- You follow a compass.
A road map is improving on what went before.
A compass is about creating a new route ahead.
The first route will bring success and you will have played a part, done your job and you may even exceed expectations. You will be rewarded and compensated accordingly. This is the income-led life.
The second route is invariably harder, but often the one with the greatest influence on the world around you. This isn’t for the faint of heart but it will change the course of many other people’s lives. This is impact-led living.
For those who have chosen the second path, no one said it would be easy. So never lose sight of the fact that you are resetting a course for generations.
These are the people we want to work with. Brave people who are choosing the path less traveled and building a company that serves for the long term, not just a quick fix.
We are not about disposable plastics, sugary drinks, or fleeting moments, we are about sustainability, health, and legacy. We are about purpose and true purpose is generational. Even if the founders of the company we work with want to exit, we are interested in the audience that are left behind because the message and meaning should carry on.
So whether you are a networking brand or a school, a real brand can be in your life for life. A school can serve your children and community but also serve grandparents.
When you see your audience as people you care about ‘long term’ it becomes the heart of what you do. That is why we show impact-led businesses how to build legacy as they scale. When you think this way, your fans will become followers!