Delegate, Focus, and GROW Your Business

The Power of Unpopular

It seems like common sense: in order to launch a successful brand, a business needs to be as popular as possible across the board. Erika Napoletano’s book The Power of Unpopular: A Guide to Building Your Brand for the Audience Who Will Love You (and why no one else matters) takes that conventional wisdom and turns it on its ear, offering innovative ideas for building a brand based on community building and “becoming unpopular.”

Working from the standpoint that there’s no such thing as universal popularity, Napoletano’s fresh take on branding and catering to the needs and desires of a specific crowd over striving for generic palatability posits that “brands should be inherently human.” In a global marketplace that’s almost completely saturated, being unpopular may actually be your brand’s saving grace.

“Unpopular” brands may not be universally loved, but they’re often championed vehemently by adherents that “get it.” Following Erika Napoletano’s advice helps your brand become the kind goes viral, shared amongst like-minded groups through word of mouth. Everyone on the other side of the fence may turn up their collective noses or even outright insult your brand, but your loyal band of dedicated customers will be actively helping you to build your brand into something truly special. Finding your own niche and ignoring the perceived comfort of the middle ground may seem like a stretch initially, but her convincing voice and lively attitude serves as an inspiration for any entrepreneur or business owner out there.

Truly catering to one niche audience and building a brand that resonates with your customers means that you’ll probably be disliked, or maybe even hated, by others. Taking Napoletano’s no-nonsense approach allows you to play up your strengths, recognize your brand’s potential weaknesses and work to build that brand without pandering to some idealized middle ground. With plenty of sassiness, wit and some no-holds-barred language, Erika Napoletano manages to make the world of branding seem like a wild frontier, rather than the sterilized and impersonal world that it can sometimes feel like.

Every up-and-coming entrepreneur should read The Power of Unpopular, and absorb the tenets of building a highly-personalized, truly customer-oriented brand. Figure out what the driving personality behind your brand’s identity is, how it reflects the services you’re offering and what it means to be so successful that you’re sometimes completely unpopular.

photo credit:  hillary the mammal

Posted on April 1st, 2013 by Rachel Braam, Office Manager

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