Did you watch the last election TV debate?
(If you’re outside the UK, we’re in the ‘grip’ of a general election and so have been treated to parading all manner of political nutjobs across our TV screens, much to our abject horror…)
If you did, you’ll have seen a rather unexpected but marvellous opening gambit from putty-faced UKIP front man Nigel Farage right at the beginning of the debate.
He attacked the audience.
Right from his podium, he struck out at the very people perched in front of him accusing them of lack of comprehension and being “remarkable even by the left-wing standards of the BBC”.
He basically told them to their face “you’re all left wing idiots”
Immediately, the boos rang out and the presenter David Dimbleby rushed to the BBC’s defence.
But it was irrelevant.
Farage had done precisely what he needed.
By attacking his audience and the venerable organisation that is the BBC, he immediately positioned himself in opposition to the very forces he knew his ‘real’ audience also detest.
He positioned himself immediately as the underdog.
Here was the fighter who has struggled to get his voice heard through left-wing and establishment bias the liberal media (including the BBC) has been trying to choke…
“Oh, woe is me!” he (metaphorically) cried as he lamented the unseen forces against him. “Look at who and what is trying to keep us good, salt-of-the-earth British citizen down..”
It’s total b*llocks, of course… but a smart piece of manoeuvring from the UKIP leader.
You see he’s using the “douchebag” strategy.
He’s being an all-out, balls-to-the-wall, no-holds-barred d*ck to you and I because he knows we don’t matter.
Only 15% of people max are going to vote UKIP this time around.
And they’re not you or me.
They hate you and me.
And he knows that.
That’s why it’s more profitable to go in with full guns blazing and attacking the likes of you and I…
But here’s the thing, I seriously think YOU should consider whether this would work for your business.
(Because there are very few businesses that wouldn’t benefit from some douchey-ness)
This whole strategy is based on a philosophy called ‘douchefluence’ which has as its premise the method of loudly (and sometimes vehemently) isolating and alienating non-core audiences and opposing forces in order to position yourself more strongly with your target audience.
It’s kind of the opposite of Dale Carnegie’s How To Win Friends and Influence People…
… more like How To Lose Friends, Alienate Others And Influence The People WhoReally Matter to you.
And it WORKS.
You see it all the time.
Certain celebs, presenters and political leaders all turning on someone or something, becoming embroiled in a very public fight.
And despite public opinion bristling against them, their core following becomes even more hardened in their support.
If you’re a renegade, a maverick or a rebel, you simply gotta upset someone.
You’ve gotta play it right, of course.
Don’t jump on Facebook right now and start dishing out abuse or accuse a rival of something libellous… it all comes back to careful positioning, selecting the ‘villains’ your audience identifies themselves again (Obama, anyone?) and picking your moment to weigh in.
This is a MUST-DO strategy if you’re working in a sector or profession with established businesses and you want to position yourself as the tradition-smashing iconoclast.
I’ll be digging into this in more detail in the next issue of The Jody Raynsford Letter which goes to print this weekend.
With the British general election round the corner and the race for the White House hotting up, the whole issue is dedicated to the marketing lessons from politics. And there’s a ballot box full of ’em.
Think of me as a better-looking, younger Frank Underwood.
There’s only a few days before the issue prints so if you want it rushed to you next week, you know what to do:
(And yes, I’ve changed its name. It’s my newsletter and I can do what I goddamn want with it…
… see what I did there?).
What a douche.