Recently, I completed some work by Marisa and the Live Your Message Team. One of her teachings she shared is tribe vs. niche-based audiences. You know I always listen to other industry leaders, I’m always learning. When I learn something that resonates, I share and add my perspective.
As you are building out your communication framework, i.e., how you are going to communicate into the marketplace, you have to know what type of following you are trying to create. Now, many of us think, “I’m not trying to create a following, I just want to help people.” I get it, but if you have something you are selling, you are inherently creating a following. You want brand loyalty, right? So how are you going to communicate in order to achieve that in the marketplace?
You have to decide if you are going to create a tribe or a niche type audience.
Marisa describes the tribe-based audience as the intersection of who you serve and how you’re different. Makes sense, right? The “how you are different” is why people follow you. It’s why you listen to this podcast for example.
Niche-based on the other hand is the intersection of who you serve and what you do.
So which one do you want to create?
For me, I want a tribe-based audience. I want to build connections with my client base and I want to have a connection that’s unique to me. So I gravitate to the tribe definition. I want relationships, community, connection.
Now, for Determined, my backpack company, I had to think through this. I think for products, most people say, niche. “I just want to sell my product to the right people.” For me though, I really think I’m a tribe type of person, even for a product.
So here is how I think about this one. You do have to pick which type of audience you want to create because how you communicate with them, how you build your communication pillar, will be different depending on the audience type.
To build this audience following, I have to do what I talked about yesterday. In order to build my audience; I have to be vulnerable. I have to connect with you, the people that I serve, but I have to talk to you about how I’m different. So how am I different? Let me list a few ways:
I don’t believe in dressing professionally all of the time.
I think women can and should be direct and confident and not be told they are a B* for being such. I think women who have to “tone it down” to make others feel comfortable being in the wrong circle and doing the wrong job. Be you, be bold, be strong, go make the world better!
When I teach, I create a stepwise approach for you to follow. I try to create a very logical, rational approach so that when you hear it you are like, “DUH, yep, that’s it. I couldn’t put my finger on it before, but that’s it!”
When I coach, I try to help everyone realize that 99% of the rules are rules we have created in our heads–so stop following fake rules and move forward. The big rule I combat right out of the gate is: You have to quit your job to start your business. No, you don’t! But we create rules in our minds to tell us we have to do that.
Some people like those perspectives, some don’t. I don’t want you to be part of my tribe and buy my services or products without having that connection. That’s just me.
That doesn’t mean that niche-based is wrong. It just isn’t the path I want to follow. So let me ask you, which type of following or audience type do you want to create? Your challenge today is to decide and to adjust your communication pillar accordingly.