How To Stand Out While Following The Crowd
Movie theaters recently began debuting the trailer for Blinded By The Light, a film featuring the music of Bruce Springsteen. Blinded By The Light will fall as number four in the line of movies based off of music legends that premiered in the past year. With a potentially overwhelming number of screenplays with the same feature, everyone is wondering if this new movie will be a success.
Bohemian Rhapsody (Queen) began the trend in December of 2018 and was closely followed by Rocketman (Elton John) and Yesterday (The Beatles), both of which came out this summer.
All of these movies have pulled serious box office numbers, Bohemian Rhapsody leading at $216,428,042, proving that basing a movie off of the music of renowned artists is a good idea. However, it brings up the question: when is one more too much?
Following popular trends is a tempting thing to do. If an idea proves to be successful for your competitors, no one can blame you for wanting to join in.
While it can be a strategic move, following the crowd can end in disaster. Companies face blending in with competitors who provide the same services they do and are going after the same clients. Follow these four tips to make sure you stand out even though you’re following the crowd.
Build around your own brand
When following a trend, it’s important to focus on your brand. Companies may be in the same industry, but they all have their own mission statement, goals and company culture that serves as a foundation for their work.
Though Rocketman and Yesterday both came out this summer, they were built on completely different premises and around different brands. Rocketman is a musical biopic that gives a raw look into the life of artist Elton John. On the other hand, “Yesterday” is a “what if- “ movie, imagining the world if people forgot about The Beatles. They both successfully focused on their goals, revealing the life of a star and highlighting iconic music in a fictional comedy.
Companies should follow the same principles by sticking to the overall message they want to give. Though your company may share the same services that directly compete with other businesses, emphasize what makes you different. No one can flaunt your brand better than you can. Focus on your message and your message alone. Copying something that worked for someone else will never work out in your favor.
Appeal to your target audience
No one is more important than your publics. They buy your services, advocate for your brand and, in most cases, are responsible for your profit. When trying something new to follow a crowd, you have to keep your target audience in mind.
Rocketman and Bohemian Rhapsody were easy to compare because they are both considered musical biopics that expose the highs and crude lows of artists Elton John and Freddie Mercury. However, the two appealed to different audiences. Rocketman was rated R and focused more on John’s romantic life than the production of his music. Bohemian Rhapsody was a tale of Mercury’s life and his music, less probing than Rocketman and rated PG-13.
The ability to attract different audiences through storyline and rating allowed both movies to succeed. This tactic applies to businesses as well. If you want to work with a specific type of client, tell them what they want to hear. Never compromise or try to be something different but highlight the aspects of your company that will attract them the most.
Timing is everything
It goes without saying that bad timing can ruin anything. A press release, a shift in company structure or a change in your services all can come at a bad time if you don’t strategically plan them.
The producers of Rocketman failed to utilize timing. The movie came out during the summer, in the midst of Disney live-action musicals, big-budget superhero features and a decent amount of classic action films. It easily got lost in the mix.
Yet, Bohemian Rhapsody had excellent timing. December is notorious for releasing anticipated movies. Multiple films in the Star Wars franchise have been released over the past few years and 2017 saw The Greatest Showman which was the sixth biggest hit in movie history.
The best way to make sure your timing won’t fail you is by paying attention to what else is going on with your company, its employees, its publics and the general news. If there is particularly strong need for your services, it’s a great time to get yourself out there. If your company is having internal struggles, it may be better to wait.
Any differences can be important
The central theme for standing out in a crowd is to be original. No matter how many similarities you have with competitors, the smallest aspects of your business can make a difference.
Though the fourth musical legend movie is on its way, it may not be a bad thing. If you’re considering following a trend, don’t immediately write it off because of its popularity. Distinguish yourself from the crowd and, most importantly, showcase your brand.
Kyra Beckish is a marketing associate at Flackable, a national, full-service public relations agency headquartered in Philadelphia.