I have worked with many companies and I am amazed at how many of them think that marketing is akin to Martha Stewart’s resurrected reputation, the alien landings at Roswell, or the Red Sox winning the World Series. In short, they think it’s magic. I don’t know how many times I have heard, “Can’t you guys just come in and do that word-of-mouth marketing stuff?”
The reality is that the formula is fairly simple. However, the first step can always be the most difficult: creating a cause. Customers will buy products from you, but evangelists buy into a cause or a “higher, holier calling.” This means creating a altruistic vision or “making meaning” as Guy Kawasaki likes to say. It’s a reason for being beyond just making money.
If you truly want to begin the process of change within your company, start by coming up with a cause. Whether it is “daily meaningful activities” like Roaring Springs, or “stick it to the man (a.k.a. Bill Gates)” like you Mac users out there, there has to be something that your customers can rally around. What’s your cause?