The problem: Way too many marketers (perhaps you as well) are guilty of blindly following their competitors in every regard - from their pricing, to their positioning.
As a result, your business suffers. You're not giving your market a reason to buy from you.
The solution: There are a few available. And the one below isn't an absolute by any means. But I do feel it's a fantastic way to brand your business.
This one's called Controversial Marketing for Profits.
Marvel Comics - The Green Lantern.
A couple of weeks ago, Marvel announced the upcoming release of a new issue of The Green Lantern... With a little twist.
You see, the character portraying the superhero is gay. There's even a "scene" (for the lack of a better word) of him kissing his alleged boyfriend.
What makes things even more interesting is that this coincided with Obama's pro-homosexual statements.
WWE - Stone Cold Steve Austin, a lesbian storyline and a "delightful" array of coarse language
WWE was one of the most controversial TV shows for a long time. This was a show that pioneered (or at least, popularized) language and hand symbols among others.
1) Stone Cold was portrayed as the chief figure in the fight against douchebag bosses during the attitude era... This was something that was never done in any televised show before.
2) WWE experimented with a lesbian storyline that become hugely popular. A few of the divas shared fiery hot kisses on screen. Once again, largely unheard of - especially on a show with a PG rating.
3) Triple H and Shawn Michaels did a George Carlin-esque piece (in the 90s, if my memory serves...) in response to Fox Network's stand against the use of coarse language on television. The fact that this promo was styled as a presidential speech packed an even harder punch.
4) The 2 of them broke boundaries with racially suggestive language (like comparing The Hart Foundation to the KKK).
5) And of course, there was Mick Foley and his willingness to take extreme... to well, extreme levels.
These are a mere few examples. WWE has now become much more child friendly - not even a drop of blood (wtf?) on screen. As a result, their popularity, at least among the older crowd, has dropped significantly.
Guns N' Roses - Chinese Democracy, a "hate" song and the world's most dangerous Rock N' Roll Bands
They're no longer the band they once were. That's a given. Nonetheless, the mere name of their latest release (Chinese Democracy) was enough to have the album banned in China.
Furthermore, back in the day when the original line-up was still around, they released a track titled "One In A Million".
The lyrics discussed Axl's encounters with an Iranian, an African-American and a gay man (among others).
The words may not be easy on your eyes, so I've decided against pasting that particular verse here.
Needless to say, that song raised shockwaves through the media. This incident contributed to the disdain that was already present towards Rock N' Roll in general.
Twisted Sister's Dee Snider even carried the flag in the battle against unnecessary censorship in the Senate. He made Al Gore, his wife, and a few other distinguished people look like a bunch of idiots.
Motley Crue, KISS and Poison made glam rock huge - Thanks to their outlandish costumes and fantastic music (Okay, maybe not KISS).
Megadeth in particular challenged governing bodies with their provocative songs.
Slayer... With songs like: "South of Heaven". "Angel of Death", "Jihad" and "God Hates Us All", nothing needs to be said.
Black Sabbath had their seemingly satanic pentagrams accompany their live performances. And Ozzy apparently acquired a taste for crows as well.
The "Saw" movies are self-explanatory. This series along with the "Cannibal Holocaust".
The Priory of Sion never existed. But it didn't stop Dan Brown from making a killing off "The Da Vinci Code", now did it?
Pizza in 30 minutes flat
One word - Domino's. While their "30 minutes or it's free" USP may not be viewed as controversial, it was a ballsy statement of intent. And it worked. They changed the game of home delivery.
FedEx also revolutionized post with the 24 hours guarantee as well.
And then, there's Internet Marketing
Michel Fortin released a report titled "The Death of the Sales Letter".
Our very own Mal Lambe has branded himself as "The Copy Nazi".
There was an acne-curing eBook released a few years ago titled "Acne Free In 3 Days".
Long story short... Controversy is compelling. Take a look at Raydal's post titled "Google and Facebook to disappear in 5 years", for example. The views are flying off the handle.
Controversy is applicable everywhere. To name a few:
1) Articles/blog posts etc.,
3) Product names
4) Business names
Naturally, grabbing their attention is just part of the battle. You have to be smart enough to back yourself up (like the folks mentioned above).
Bottom line: It pays to make an eye-popping statement that screams for attention.
The question is - Do you have the balls to stand out?