In search of the minimum viable audience (Seth Godin)
Of course, everyone wants to reach the maximum audience. To be seen by millions, to maximize return on investment, to have a huge impact.
And so we fall all over ourselves to dumb it down, average it out, pleasing everyone and anyone.
You can see the problem.
When you seek to engage with everyone, you rarely delight anyone. And if you're not the irreplaceable, essential, one-of-a-kind changemaker, you never get a chance to engage with the market.
The solution is simple but counterintuitive: Stake out the smallest market you can imagine. The smallest market that can sustain you, the smallest market you can adequately serve. This goes against everything you learned in capitalism school, but in fact, it's the simplest way to matter.
When you have your eyes firmly focused on the minimum viable audience, you will double down on all the changes you seek to make. Your quality, your story and your impact will all get better.
And then, ironically enough, the word will spread.
Focusing on the MVA is a key part of what we teach in The Marketing Seminar. (Look for the purple circle).
It's easy to talk about in the abstract, but difficult to put into practice. Just about every brand you care about, just about every organization that matters to you--this is how they got there. By focusing on just a few and ignoring the non-believers, the uninvolved and the average.