Getting lucky… or getting smart?

Daft Punk’s ‘Get Lucky’ was universally recognised as the best song of 2013.

By whatever metric you’d care to use, it was ‘the best’ – my hipster friend said so; sales; streams; music critics; airplay; my four year old knows all the words.

But the interesting thing is that it became cool, then popular and then stayed cool after it was popular – a feat traditionally reserved for a select few iconic brands, but rarely achieved in the fickle world of entertainment where coolness typically lasts 15 minutes.

MCM Media has just conducted some ground-breaking research, which sheds light on a new model for marketers to successfully achieve this holy grail of cool (influential) and popular (sales).

So how can your brand be cool and popular?

Be remarkable to influential communities

We identified several tribes who effectively determine the success of your brand connecting with its audience: one tribe disseminates messages at speed and with scale, the other tribe validates an action or change in behaviour through their expertise.

The message-disseminator tribe is comprised of ‘me-toos’ – those followers with a burning desire to be seen as first-to-know by their sizeable fan base. Their job is to popularise the coolness of your content and normalise the acceptance of it for others.

The action-validator tribe are ‘experts’ – those people who know everything there is to know about a topic and are your ‘go-to’ reference. Their job is to validate a purchase or an action which you were considering and these folk are the key to unlock sales with significant scale.

These influencers are a cynical bunch so your brand will need to produce content which is highly entertaining or valuably useful. Native advertising within premium content environments is the best way to achieve stand-out among these communities as they certainly aren’t seeking out your ads!

The crucial difference with other adoption models is that the content remains cool (and therefore desirable) once popularised because it followed the accepted path of influence. Resulting with each tribe having a distinct relationship with your brand because the message and content was tailored to their needs.

Daft Punk has always been cool but until now they hadn’t cracked significant scale in Australia. Through a great track, some smart marketing of the right content, to the right people at the right time they achieved and maintained cool and popular.


Jonathan Hopkins
BY Jonathan Hopkins ON 22 April 2014
Jonathan Hopkins is the founding partner of Sonder Communications