Broadcasting’s Forgotten Cousin, Narrowcasting

Broadcasting, by definition, reaches a wide audience. Think of it as broadly casting a net.

It’s oft-forgotten cousin is narrowcasting. Narrowcasting only reaches a specific audience. Think of it as fishing with a specific hook, in a specific spot, for a specific fish.

When we design a message, we can try to make it very broadly appealing, or very narrowly specific.

If we want to attract some niche, it’s the wrong approach to be broad. Broadness becomes a turnoff.

(Almost) everyone is OK with vanilla ice cream, but most people have a different favorite flavor.

If we’re presenting something to a room of strangers, it’s OK to broadcast about the vanilla ice cream, but we also may want to narrowcast the special Turkey Hill Box of Chocolates ice cream we have available, for those that are interested.

Targeting everyone is not a strategy, because by definition not everyone can be special. A few is all it takes. Find the right few and narrowly make them feel special.

It’s a challenge. Luckily, there’s a lot of vanilla ice cream vendors out there, so being different just takes not copying them. Only small steps are needed.

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