Commitment is doing something even when you don’t want to. No matter what. Loyalty is wanting to do something even when you shouldn’t. No matter what. Both can get you into trouble – or pay off in spades. Either way, commitment and loyalty are worth the risk.
The loyalty of fans goes a long way. I will, however, support artists and brands that have earned my trust over time. I do not think twice before paying for a Sam Mendes film, a Black Keys album, or a Legend of Zelda video game. Over the years, these names have consistently won my affection. But I didn’t pay for them at first. I saw my first Sam Mendes film in a class, heard my first Black Keys song in my brother’s car, and played my first Zelda game in a friend’s basement. Their talent and quality converted me alone. I became a loyal fan for life. The idea of curating loyal fans is not new or revolutionary. Brands as strong as Apple, In-N-Out Burger, and Pixar learned this very early on.
Creating brilliant products is not enough. The challenge is to convert freeloading bystanders into fans willing to pay. The trick is to acknowledge that fans won’t pay for you until you earn their trust. Therefore, the most effective way to develop a following early on is to share your work far and wide for free. Give great content away and audiences will thank you for it. When you have enough fans to scale your brand, start monetizing. Watch the loyalty role in.
- Higher Purpose – for the mission and for humanity abroad.
- Steadfast Optimism – faith in people, the direction, and positive results.
- Genuine Patriotism – in service of and love for the family or organization at hand.
Do you have what it takes?