Catching Fire and differentiating your business

Bear with me for this one as I had to touch on The Hunger Games: Catching Fire as it’s everywhere right now. How does it fit into differentiation and branding? Well, here goes nothing…

Whether you read the books, watched the films or both there is something to learn from Katniss Everdeen as it relates to your business. In the first book / movie she defies the government (the big guys in your industry) by winning The Hunger Games alongside her District 12 companion, Peeta Mellark. Apparently, her and Peeta broke the rules as only one person is supposed to be left standing in The Arena. I’m not saying to break the rules and get yourself into a legal battle with the big guys, but again, bear with me.

Katniss was different. She didn’t fit the mold of a regular Hunger Games victor. She actually tried saving people instead of killing them. Of course, this didn’t please the big guys, but it won her some fans in the District’s.

In the second book / movie Catching Fire we start to see the repercussions of going head-to-head with the government / big guys. Katnisses life, her families lives, and her District as a whole is threatened much like your livelihood is threatened by taking you business into the same arena as the big guys. How do you survive? By being different. Yes, the big guys have fans just like the government has fans by putting on The Hunger Games. However, we see Katniss, bucking the trend and in doing so starting a revolution.

When your competitor goes for the kill, go for peace and love and turn the competition into the ‘bad guy’. If your competitor markets their product on TV, use radio. When your competitor has a sale seemingly every weekend, say you never have sales and add value to your product or service to showcase why it’s worth every single penny.
Read more about this here.

You’ll start winning fans and who knows maybe even starting a revolution of your own just like Katniss Everdeen.

Oh Lordes

She’s young, from New Zealand and she’s been number one for weeks on the Billboard Hot 100. How is it that a non-American, teenage singer can topple the rest of the competition? Simple…she’s different and her song is about as far away as you can get from the other pop-tastic tunes that litter the Top 10.

When the majority of pop songs are over produced, over written and have elaborate, and sometimes shocking videos. Lorde’s Royals is so simple. She wrote it herself and the beat is uber-simplistic. Plus, the music video is as stripped down as you can get.

When you listen to the radio or your iPod or whatever, it’s amazing at how much the song sticks out because it doesn’t sound like everything else. Is it a good song? Sure, but it also immediately grabs your attention within the first 5 seconds because it’s so different. If Royals sounded like bubble gum pop, do you think it would have the power to stay at #1 for as long as it has or would it even hit #1? Maybe.

Being different matters in life, in music and in business. Why crowd yourself in a lane that’s already taken by your competition? Make an effort to be different. Try doing the exact opposite of what your competition is doing and you may find yourself on top of the charts. It worked for Lorde’s, so why can’t it work for you?