Give Me What I Want

Nerd Proof As proof of my nerdhood, I offer up Exhibits A, B, and C. Yes, three tickets to J.J. Abram’s Star Trek. I saw it opening night, again the next night, and then a few days later in San Francisco. I will no doubt see it one more time in the theater, and then will probably own the DVD.

So beyond proving that I am every bit the nerd you know me to be, why bother blogging this? Simple. The lesson here is that Abrams delivered. He gave his backers the movie they needed, but he gave his fans, the ticket-buyers, the maker-breakers, exactly what we wanted. Each note that Abrams rang in our direction (again, “our” being the people who wanted the most from the experience), we rewarded him with more positive response.

What are those notes? If you have any kind of background in Star Trek, let’s just say that nary a scene goes by that you don’t find yourself giggling just a little bit to yourself, or saying “No way!” (Those of you who’ve seen it, don’t spoil it. You know what I’m talking about.)

So what are the notes you need to ring out from your product or service to make a die-hard fan? They’re not hard to think up. If you’re an Apple fan, we really want a netbook. If you’re an iPhone fan, you want some basics, like copy/paste and MMS messaging. If you’re a Starbucks fan, you want… what? If you’re a fan of house insurance, what do you want from them?

You can see where this might get tricky if you’re not in the “kapow!” business world. And yet, I suspect there is something that your would-be fans would want.

Have you ever asked them?

Live long and prosper.

ChrisBrogan.com runs on the Genesis Framework

Genesis Theme Framework

The Genesis Framework empowers you to quickly and easily build incredible websites with WordPress. Whether you're a novice or advanced developer, Genesis provides you with the secure and search-engine-optimized foundation that takes WordPress to places you never thought it could go.

With automatic theme updates and world-class support included, Genesis is the smart choice for your WordPress website or blog.

Become a StudioPress Affiliate

  • http://www.ukoko.com/ Alec East

    Seconds before I read this post, I was reading Eaon Pritchard's blog post about a subtle but important change that massively improved his shopping experience : http://eaonpritchard.blogspot.com/2009/05/usabi

    He talks about a familiar problem to many of us – finding a parking space – that's been resolved by implementing some advanced common sense.

    Sometime all you want a company to do is to make life easier.

  • http://blogspot.fluidnewmedia.com/ featureBlend

    Hey Chris – You couldn't have said it better – Give them what they want indeedums!! – This is one of the corner-stones of a successful business (any business). To do that one must be aware of whats around them and accept that everyone has different views. Not everyone might understand your point of view, and you have to transform your mind to think towards the masses.

    Throughout my career I've learned how to accept people and actually ask and listen to what they have to say -> then DELIVER. You know there's a saying that it only takes 1000 die hard fans to make you a success, but I'm sure you knew that already! :-)

    It is at the end of the day a *volumes game, so go ahead spread the *risk, but make sure you plan it out first and get loads of feedback (Ioads)!

    Thanks for the insight, I thrive upon it..

  • partywedo

    Customers want and need great things to materialize for them. It is our task to assemble all of the systems to transport them to the place that they want to be.
    As the captain of our individual enterprises it is our duty to give them great experiences that turn them into fans and will keep them coming back.
    If we build great products and deliver superior service then no matter where our fans may be, they will always want to return to our enterprise.
    Let's give our customers a reason to state – Beam me up!

  • http://www.stevesmiscellany.com/ Stephen Allred

    I see your tickets and raise you http://www.twitpic.com/5f6ll
    But on a serious note, it was a fantastic film!

  • johnhaydon

    If you're a Chris Brogan fan, maybe he should bring back the tips newsletter.

  • Sharon Hearty

    There is no doubt that 'exceeding your customers' expectations, needs or wants turns them into 'great fans', this in turn creates unmeasurable word of mouth and word of mouse advocacy!

  • http://artroxthinks.wordpress.com/ Nicky Tillyer (@artrox)

    Yes but what about the many and most customers who don't know what they want? Ask somebody buying a vacuum cleaner what they want? One that does the job! But what of the experience, the after service, the add ons…asking them what they want does not always work!

    But I guess that also refers to the old world, and in the new social media world those who don't know what they want are perhaps influenced by the many (or few!) who definitely do. which also allows us marketers and brand builders to tap in to that collective knowledge without asking everybody and getting nowhere fast.

    So I lament, not every customer does know what they want, and I rejoice that on social media we can at least tap in easily to those who do.

  • http://www.simonstapleton.com/ Simon Stapleton

    Abram's work was a masterpiece. He *has* given the punters what they want. But this isn't a surprise, is it? The fan-hood of star-trek is well known, well published and well oiled. It would be tough not to make something that they want, providing that the backers have given as much freedom as is needed. Perhaps that's the important thing.

    Are backers (of any business) in touch enough with their punters? Do they listen enough? Do they get amongst punters as equals rather than talking to them from the semi-lowered window of their glossy limo?

    The 'captains' of a market should know what their troops want. This is their job. Generals are much removed, and make imperfect decisions because of their lack of intimacy, or often because there are other factors in play such as politics and other forms of greed.

    So CXOs – get amongst your people, and the real customer. Not the bosses' boss of your customer.

  • http://thelostjacket.com Stuartfoster

    Making things easier and giving fans what they want? Seems mind bogglingly easy. But here's the thing…it's not. Especially if you are trying to create a product that will appeal to a large and varied demographic. Star Trek nailed it and I'd actually compare it to the first X-Men in terms of laying the groundwork for a detailed and nuanced series.

    It's going to be really fun to see what they do with the next one.

  • http://thelostjacket.com Stuartfoster

    Making things easier and giving fans what they want? Seems mind bogglingly easy. But here's the thing…it's not. Especially if you are trying to create a product that will appeal to a large and varied demographic. Star Trek nailed it and I'd actually compare it to the first X-Men in terms of laying the groundwork for a detailed and nuanced series.

    It's going to be really fun to see what they do with the next one.

  • http://www.socialmediabuyingguide.org/ Walter Roark

    If listening to your customers is important in the real world, then it must be even more critical in cyberspace (no Star Trek pun intended). :) Since I work more specifically in the world of social networking, my colleagues and I understand that you only choose not to listen to your audience at your peril. Putting together a dynamic online community requires a lot of back-and-forth communication to give it the kapow! it deserves. But in that communication, asking questions and communicating are far and away the most important elements.

  • http://www.whitneyhoffman.com/ Whitney

    JJ Abrams, TED Talk, about the magic box, kept coming to mind all during the movie. He is a consummate story teller, and that is the one thing many movies overlook. Sure, visuals are fantastic, but if the storyline is weak, the end product will be as well.

    John Lassiter, from Pixar and Disney Animation talks a lot about the Disney school of storytelling, and that there needs to be a tear for every laugh. Pixar movies, as a result, have the same sort of staying power that classic Disney movies have, and that many newer pictures like “The Ant Bully” or “Fish Tales” do not.

    And this all applies to everything we talk about in new media, because if your baseline story and product are not compelling, no amount of window dressing will get you past the fact that the underlying product is just not delightful. It's not compelling. There's no reason to return, time and again, for second helpings.

    Great stories and products, by contrast, invite revisits- Eoin Colfer once remarked that for kids, books were read and re-read so often, it's like they were drinking the ink off the page- that's what a compelling story does. And it's why stories like Pride and Prejudice can be retold in new formats and still succeed- because the underlying story and message speaks to us and is compelling, like fables and legends (or good jokes), no matter how many times or versions we see.

  • http://www.virtuallin.com/ virtuallin

    Funny, I was just thinking along these lines when I spotted a MaryKay twit about getting a free product but you pay only the shipping – which my cynical mind always equates to “the freebie is worth less than the shipping fee.” How much more passion / loyalty could be generated by just making free equal free?

    And I must say I know precisely what you mean about the latest Star Trek – Abrams broke the “odd numbered Trek movies suck” curse and delivered both a balanced homage to us old timers and a reinvigorated Trek for future generations. What a tight rope to walk! I've seen it twice and hope to catch it once more in IMAX… Imax spoils you, LOL.

    When you consider how insane Hollywood is – the US version of Top Gear with Adam Carolla was dropped before it ever had a chance to air – it's stunning to think that some folks like Abrams are so grounded.

  • http://www.natashasartcandy.com natashawescoat

    again, you've reminded me of something I need to do more. More and more, as social media evolves we are becoming more aware that this is a collaboration of community. No more dictator and audience!

  • http://www.idealaunch.com/blog/ Brindey

    You must go see it IMAX. Tonight.

  • Pingback: Give Me What I Want | chrisbrogan.com « Ms12’s Weblog

  • Pingback: I Want to Fall in Love With You | danny brown

  • Pingback: Internet Marketing, Stratgy & Technology Links – May 19, 2009 « Sazbean

  • http://stevegarfield.com stevegarfield

    “No Way!”

    I loved that about the film.

    There's a Gibbs Service Station on Centre Street in JP. Charlie is good at fixing tires.

    I drove my car in, after inflating the tire.

    Told him I had a leak.

    He said, “I'll take a look at it right now.”

    What!?

    That was somewhat of a “No Way!” moment because that never happens at service stations, but Charlie is always like that.

    That's why I always bring my cars to him when they need tire work.

    In the end the tires needed to be replaced.

    I could have gone over to BJ's to get a discount, but I had Charlie order a tire and install it.

    He even called me at home to apologize that it wouldn't be ready in the morning, but would be done in the afternoon because his suppliers didn't have it in stock.

  • http://calummaclean.wordpress.com/ calum

    Thanks for this one. Laughed my ass off. Going to see the movie this weekend.

  • http://stevegarfield.com stevegarfield

    “No Way!”

    I loved that about the film.

    There's a Gibbs Service Station on Centre Street in JP. Charlie is good at fixing tires.

    I drove my car in, after inflating the tire.

    Told him I had a leak.

    He said, “I'll take a look at it right now.”

    What!?

    That was somewhat of a “No Way!” moment because that never happens at service stations, but Charlie is always like that.

    That's why I always bring my cars to him when they need tire work.

    In the end the tires needed to be replaced.

    I could have gone over to BJ's to get a discount, but I had Charlie order a tire and install it.

    He even called me at home to apologize that it wouldn't be ready in the morning, but would be done in the afternoon because his suppliers didn't have it in stock.

  • http://calummaclean.wordpress.com/ calum

    Thanks for this one. Laughed my ass off. Going to see the movie this weekend.

  • http://www.osmanoglunakliyat.com.tr evden eve nakliyat
  • http://www.osmanoglunakliyat.com.tr evden eve nakliyat
  • http://www.osmanoglunakliyat.com.tr evden eve nakliyat