Camera maker GoPro last week announced its initial public offering, signaling a golden era for wearable technology, and the ascendant heights. GoPro, which makes small, rugged, high definition actions cameras has become synonymous with extreme sports, and a made-for-YouTube lifestyle.
Why GoPro Wins
GoPro is a technological wonder, but it’s true success is in telling its story. Type “gopro” into YouTube and you’ll get more than 19,500,000 results, a blitzkreig of user-generated advertisements. Why? Three simple words; be a hero.
There were waterproof action cams long before the GoPro. None so successfully captured the imagination. Few products ever have. With their slogan “Be a hero,” GoPro invites the user to join a community of adventurers every time they start recording.
Blogger and entrepreneur Chris Brogan emphasizes the need to make the customer a hero. Your marketing message should make the customer feel like he or she has slain a dragon, when they have actually just handed over their credit card details.
With its simple slogan, GoPro has turned has transformed the essence of successful marketing into its raison d’etre. In the process GoPro has won the hearts and minds of legions of camera buyers.
How your startup can make the customer the hero
GoPro is as much a lifestyle brand as it is a product. It’s aspirational and empowering. Your business may be none of these things. As Growth Hacker Marketing author Ryan Holiday points out, even a “boring company” has great stories to tell–as long as they are about the audience and their need.
The best businesses are those that solve problems. The bigger the problem, the more heroic your customer becomes. Put customer success at the center of your story. Fight the temptation to brag about your features. Focus instead on how you’ve helped make an impact in the lives of real people. It’s really no more complicated than this.
When you make your customer a hero, he or she champions your cause. The more heroic they feel, the more marketing they will do on your behalf.
GoPro cameras have recorded the world’s most daring feats, shot in many of the world’s most beautiful locations, and they challenge us to live up to the idyllic world they portray. By strapping on a GoPro and filming life as it occurs, we’re part of a community of heroes. It’s a devilishly simple and fiendishly effective strategy.