The “Red Shirt” Radical Marketing Principle

Posted by: admin  :  Category: Sales

The last time I heard from CNN this morning, the Thai Government were making arrangements for another assault on the “Red Shirt” demonstrators to disperse them as well as to invite them back to the negotiation table. While I have no intention to be political or take sides on such matters, nonetheless, I can’t help but see in the “Red Shirt” movement a key principle of “radical” marketing that all of us can learn from.  


In case you have not noticed, the “Red Shirt” movement has endeared to itself a massive flood of followers, the sympathy of the neutrals as well as their opponents, the attention of the global community as well as the world wide media. Hey, we are talking of “breaking news” stuff here! Almost any person who reads the newspapers today would know about the “Red Shirts” movement, know something about its cause, have an opinion about it, is watching its developments and hence are “involved”. And all this took place in the period of more than a month, that’s it. During this short period of time, the “Red Shirt” movement has become a globally “recognized” phenomenon.


Now, wouldn’t it be simply “out of this world” if our business, product, service, company, brand, etc. got the same kind of attention and recognition? Is this possible? The odds of achieving this would greatly increase if we learn one of the lessons of “radical marketing” from them “Red Shirt” movement. 


Have a “meta cause”, not just a product “need category”.


Most schools of marketing would call this creating your “need category”. A need is something that a person can’t do without. That’s good enough….you may be thinking. Yes, but it is one dimensional. A “meta cause” on the other hand is a need and more; a meta cause passionately influences and induces involvement, contribution, loyalty and commitment not just of a minority but the majority!


The “Red Shirt” “meta cause was and is democracy in a country know as the “land of the free”, to a people who have never been subjected to foreign rule, who valued freedom and who felt that they were loosing their “voice” and their “political will to choose and enjoy a governance that served their needs for fairness, economic well being and political legitimacy. This is a multi dimensional META CAUSE since it involves not just one need, of economic well being, but the whole ecology of the nation, society, politics, the constitution, the integrity of their nationhood for the present and future and it involved the masses. Hence the emergence of a “meta cause”!   



It passionately induced action and involvement; people came out of their villages, quit jobs and left families to be involved. We could say that this was their “purchase decision”, a decision of necessity for them. It led them to contribution; those involved in the cause became its evangelist” to others, advertising and marketing their cause through word of mouth, one of most powerful medium of sales and marketing. They just had to tell others of the benefits of this cause; it was something that everyone needed. This caused many more to join the meta cause, creating an avalanche of “buy –ins” and an increase in “sales”. Finally, it induced loyalty and commitment; the power ofmeta cause branding”! They believed in the cause even to the point of being harassed and even death for some. If it was just a need, perhaps at the point of inconvenience and hardship, many would have left. Just like the normal consumer, in the event the brand we are looking for is out of stock, we just switch brands or quit using the product simply because it met a one dimensional need or want which could be substituted.              


Is creating a “meta cause” possible, you may ask? Yes, I know of folks, who only allow a certain kind of petrol into the tanks of their cars no matter what, who stick to certain brands of medication or skin care products no matter what, who religiously drink a certain coffee every day no matter what and who are evangelist of these products, are committed and loyal to the brand, no matter what! No compromise. For them these global brands have became embalms, symbols or metaphors of their personhood, values, habits, social standing, status, taste, physiological and emotional landscapes. It is no longer just petrol, skin care or coffee anymore, it is not just a cause….it’s a “meta cause.” That’s radical marketing!   


So what’s the take home? Meta Cause versus Need….. meta cause always wins. A meta cause brings with it multidimensional needs that goes beyond single dimensional consumerism, it is about meaning, its about values, its about semantics that engages the whole person!  Just ask Barak Obama…the architect of the “meta cause of “change we can believe in” that engaged the majority in a multi dimensional way and brought him to the white house!     


Stay committed to transcending, transforming and transferring value back to your world!



Conrad Rozario is the founder of Alchemy Resources. He has more than 14 years experience in Sales, Marketing, Business Management and Talent Development. He holds a MBA from Gordon University, Illinois, is a Master Practitioner in Neuro Semantics and NLP (ISNS, USA), a Language and Behavior  Profiling for Coaching Practitioner.  You can follow Conrad on facebook!