Turning Your Business's Brand into a Cult Brand

Cult branding happens when consumers take brand passion to the nth degree. Your business brand becomes a cult brand when consumers adopt the brand as “theirs” rather than identifying it as “yours.”

For as long as brands have existed, there have been cult brands. But in the past, most cult brands were small, underdog brands that attracted I’d-rather-fight-than-switch customers who stood by their brands with pride even when hardly anyone else even knew the brand name.

Today, even the biggest brands inspire cult brand followings by using all or most of the following strategies:

  • Start with a unique brand identity and promise that consumers truly want to be part of. Then, spotlight and stay true to your brand differences and distinctions.

  • Offer products that customers are encouraged to customize in order to adapt the products to their unique consumer preferences, no matter how far-out and unusual.

  • Create a brand experience that’s like no other and that never, ever, falls short of the consumer expectation.

  • Emphasize viral marketing over traditional advertising.

  • Support development of brand fan clubs, Web sites, forums, blogs, events, and any other channel that allows those who know and love your brand to share their opinions.

  • Create, or at least support the formation of, a community of brand fans who personify your brand by displaying it on personalized items, talking about it, and sharing their enthusiasm with others.

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