Sangram Vajre, a co-founder of Terminus — an Atlanta-based startup that helps with sales pipeline automation.
- Even if you’re building a community to support your core business growth, you have to understand this: people want to be behind a movement, not a brand. They want to be inspired by the idea of solving some common problem. They can’t care less about your product as such. They have no way of knowing if your product is goig to work for them or not. If ypu put a product in front of them, they are likely to turn away. If you put a problem in front of them — they’ll be glad to join their efforts to help with solving it.
- Here’s how it happened for us and that’s what you can learn from our story. As every marketer, I wanted to use event marketing to promote Terminus. The problem was that every time we launched a Sales Pipeline event that was sponsored by Terminus, no one else wanted to be a sponsor. But one day on my flight to San Francisco, in March 2015, I was drawing on a napkin a flipped sales funnel. And I was thinking: — what if the way people think about marketing and sales was different? What if ut was flipped?
And the idea sounded so cool that as soon as I landed I bought a domain www.flipmyfunnel.com for $800 and wrote a blog post on LinkedIn. And that was the beginning of the community. The post went viral, and everybody started telling me how great was the idea. Suddenly we had people reaching out to us and offering sponsorship, or just saying “hey, let’s do an event together!”
- When creating a movement, you market an idea. Next step is to connect your brand to this idea, like to make it your own little category leader. If the idea wins, your brand automatically wins. And if someone adopt this narrative you’re promoting as their’s they will have no other option as to choose your brand because it will be associated with this narrative.
- Creating a movement is telling a story of change. Movements can’t be static. They always fight existing status quo and the ways of thinking. But it should not be agressive. Instead of pushing your views onto your audience, you welcome them into a new exciting world. What is happening today that needs our attention? This way your brand becomes a tour guide to this new reality and your job as a brand is to help them see the world from a fresh perspective.
- By the end of the day you want your community members, those who joined the movement adopt the ideas you’re putting out, as theirs. You want people to adopt your story as theirs. You want people to nod their heads and go, "I've been saying this for years".