in Hospitality, Marketing

Give People Something To Talk About: Or, Why You May Want To Buy A Goat Off Craigslist

If you want people to talk about your project, you have to give them something to talk about.

It’s what we end up telling almost all our marketing clientsEveryone wants press but nobody wants to do anything interesting.

What is the handle you’re giving someone to pick up the story about your project, carry it over to their friend and talk about it?

A few days ago I saw an ad on Craigslist for a baby mini-goat that the owners were going to get rid (read: kill). I text them at 6:15 and by 7:15 the same mini goat was at my hostel, HK Austin, living his best life. Immediately guest wanted to take photos for Instagram. Call their mom who used to have goats for advice. Tell their friend about the hostel in Austin with a goat. A hostel with a goat? A hostel with a goat.

People want to be the center of attention. They want to be the interesting person who does interesting things in their friends eyes. They WANT interesting material about your project to tell their friends. Your job is to give it to them.

The result is the most powerful form of marketing available – word of mouth. Even the most complex and expensive marketing campaigns are all set up just to spark word of mouth. That is what sells in the long run. A McKinsey study shows that 20-50% of all buying decisions happen because of word of mouth. And that an endorsement from a close friend converts 50X any other type of marketing.

You need an entry point to your project. A handle. A reason for people to talk about it with friends. Give it to them.

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