Cult Brands are Inclusive

In Alexander the Great’s conquest of Persia, the Macedonian King upset his military compatriots and childhood friends by marrying Roxana.

Roxana was the daughter of a minor Persian baron. That is, she was not from Macedonia; she was not of Greek blood.

This outraged Alexander’s men who felt that he was disrespecting his homeland. But Alexander didn’t identify himself exclusively as Macedonian or Greek. This great military strategist had a grand vision to create an empire that united the world as one people.

Alexander understood one of the Seven Rules of Cult Brands: Be open and inclusive.

The ideals of Vans shoes, for example, probably aren’t going to speak to you if you’re not in the skateboard community. IKEA isn’t going to draw your attention if you aren’t in the market for affordable furniture that gives your home a sense of style.

The annual, week-long, Burning Man event now attracts over 65,000 attendees to the Black Rock Desert each August. Anyone can participate. As written in their ten guiding principles, “Anyone may be a part of Burning Man. We welcome and respect the stranger. No prerequisites exist for participation in our community.”

And the full range of attendees from artists to billionaires, to Silicon Valley CEOs, demonstrate that the not-for-profit is true to its word.

How To Be Inclusive

The more inclusive you are, the more customer groups you open your business to and the larger your market potential becomes.

To become a more inclusive brand requires diligence. Being inclusive means gaining insights into new customer groups and then collaborating with your teams to discover ways of relating these new customers to your business, and serving them with respect.

How inclusive is your business today?

How inclusive do you want your business to be tomorrow?

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