My Top Tier Business

For blogging, for business, for ministry, for leadership of any kind, humanness is sorely underrated.

I love this, from Guy Kawasaki’s The Art of the Start

Call me a romantic, but it’s much easier to evangelize a product that’s rooted in human values. If you agree, here’s how to achieve this:

TARGET THE YOUNG. No matter who buys your product, targeting young people forces you to build a human brand. I have no data to back this up, but it seems that lots of old people are buying products that were targeted to the young. For example, there are many baldheads driving Toyota Scions and MINI Coopers.

MAKE FUN OF YOURSELF. Most companies are incapable of making fun of themselves. It’s an attitude that they view as suicidal: “People won’t take us seriously if we don’t take ourselves seriously.” Or, they are so caught up in their self-image that appearing to lack total control scares them. As the saying goes, “To err is human,” so don’t be afraid to err and make fun of your startup.

HAVE FUN TOO. The market capitalization of a particular company, circa 2014, is approximately $400 billion. In order to celebrate anniversaries and holidays as well as the lives of interesting people, the company alters its logo for the day. How fun and human is that? Another, even better example, Richard Branson once lost a bet to Tony Fernandes, the owner of AirAsia. Because he lost, Branson had to shave his legs, apply lipstick, dress up as a flight attendant, and work on an AirAsia flight. Have you seen the CEO of United in a skirt? Do you even know who the CEO of United is?

FEATURE YOUR CUSTOMERS. Organizations that feature their customers in marketing materials exude humanness. Is there a better example than GoPro? The customer videos that it features on its website and YouTube channel make it seem as if anyone can shoot a great video with a GoPro camera.

HELP THE UNDERSERVED AND UNDERPRIVILEGED. Corporate philanthropy efforts are a double win: not only are you fulfilling a moral obligation to society, but you are also increasing brand awareness. Actually, it’s a triple win because corporate philanthropy programs are also an important tool for the recruitment and retention of employees.

Whether you’re reading content or buying products, you like to do business with humans, not websites.

There are some golden implications in that for those of us hoping to expand our influence with blogging.

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