There are two key takeaways from
1. It’s all in the marketing.
2. Surprise broca!
My son Nathan turned 16 on April 4th of this year and has been excited to begin dating and go on his first romantic excursion.
He indeed had several significant challenges.
- Challenge #1: The law posed a problem. When you are 16 you can’t drive with other teens until you’ve driven with your parents for six months. Nathan and all of his friends had made great plans and had selected the girls they wanted to ask out, however they had no way to go and pickup these girls for the date. How do you overcome that?
- Challenge #2: Budget. My sons and their friends have enough money to pay for the event, but not the craziness of a $1000 limousine and all the nonsense of an expensive prom. So budget was a constraint also.
Of course, Nathan is a very creative young man who has carefully observed his older brothers. He has also heard his father talking extensively about broca—the frontal cortex region of your brain. I often tell my sons that whenever you are marketing anything, you have to surprise broca and delight broca to get to the processing parts of your brain.
If everything is normal, normal, normal, and then you do something to surprise broca–the brain lets it through. It delights. That is how you get attention in marketing or anything else.
Nathan and his friends came up with a very well formulated plan. They each rented bicycles built for two, and they went and picked up their dates on these bikes. You can imagine the surprise and the delight of these young women as their dates pulled up on their bikes built for two.
They then pedaled up to a picnic setup with all sorts of contrast. They had everything from fancy, non-alcoholic apple juice and crème brûlée to regular old peanut butter sandwiches. They had a delightful time with a very contrasting meal
Then came the time for the formal prom. How in the heck is it okay for your dad to drive you? How obnoxious is that? So my son came up with another great plan to surprise broca.
He had my dear friend, Matt Duffin and me, dress up as blue men and serve as the chauffeurs. The only rule was we weren’t allowed to speak! We could do all the miming and gesturing we wanted, but we just couldn’t speak.
Let me tell you, we laid it on thick and had a blast!
Of course the kids experienced the tension that always accompanies a formal dance. I mean, young women weren’t meant to be in those frilly dresses. The young men take one look at the pretty girls and they instantly freeze.
It was fun to watch the tension dissolve as we hit our first stop sign. Matt and I got out and did a little fire drill jig running around the car in our blue man suits.
Needless to say the teenagers had a delightful time and Nathan indeed hit a broca homerun. While everyone else was pulling up in their fancy stretched limos, Nathan and his friends arrived in a minivan chauffeured by blue men.
Two rules: whether you’re wanting to romance someone or whether you’re wanting to win a marketing competition or whether you are trying to snag some attention online.
Rule #1: It is all in the marketing and presentation.
Rule #2: Always surprise broca!