If you’re going to launch a business – join an existing conversation.
And make sure it’s a passionate and meaningful conversation.
Because the best conversations to join are about things that matter.
Conversation that matter lasts longer.
And so will your business.
So I hope the conversation that you join polarises people.
And I hope you have an opinion.
All great brands have an opinion.
And no great brand is for everyone.
The Right Kind of Conversation
If you have an idea for a business, think hard about the kind of conversation you join, though.
Right now there are conversations that matter going on all around you.
- Irresponsible use of plastics.
- Isolation of the vulnerable and the old.
- Gender equality.
- Why people with disabilities are considered as an afterthought or a ‘problem’ (especially considering there are 11 million people in the UK with a disability).
- Treating all people ethically and with kindness.
- Wealth distribution.
- Global warming.
- Fair pay and stable jobs for workers.
- Buying British (if it makes sense to do so).
- What beer or food actually tastes like.
- Provenance/historically authentic approaches to making or doing.
- Experiences that uplift and inspire and help people to be happier or a better version of themselves.
- Addressing mental health issues.
- Creating jobs.
- Knowing where and how things are made.
- How food can be a fuel to help you live better and longer.
- Kinder, more ethical farming practices.
- Buying better and buying less.
- Making buying decisions for yourself, not because of what people that don’t really matter might think of you.
And there are of course a whole load of fickle and transient people, that don’t really know their own mind, having vacuous and stupid fucking conversations around:
- How big my lips are (or aren’t).
- What my dress looks like when I wear it and photograph it for my instagram page (before I take it back to the shop I bought it from).
- How cheaply I can get something with zero consideration as to why it is so cheap.
- Which beer gets you most pissed, most quickly.
These people rarely make loyal customers.
Because what they’re talking about doesn’t really matter.
These things may feel like they matter to some people at certain points in their lives.
But ultimately – they don’t.
Pretty soon, these people will seek out satisfaction of another transient need.
Until, one day, they will find a real need that really does matter to them.
Deep to their core.
And there they’ll stay.
Rule 1. Businesses spring life much more quickly when they join existing conversations.
Rule 2. The vast majority of those business will only last a long time and develop a loyal following when the conversation actually matters.
Rule 3. Think about the change you want to make with your business.
Rule 3 is your purpose.
Then – get on it!
If you get Rule 3 right – for you – there will never be a day you don’t bounce out of bed to deliver on the promise you’ve made.