Customer Bait Balls

Watching the ballet of the bait balls I can’t help but think of the parallels to marketing. No, I don’t mean viewing customers as prey! There’s something else.

Hundreds of fish swirl in a cluster shifting directions, turning on a dime, joining with other groups and splitting into small groups again and are a perfect metaphor for how consumers make buying decisions in today’s market place.

The collective seems to move as one animal. Those sudden turns start with just a few fish shifting. The news spreads through the group and the others shift their course so quickly that the school of hundreds of individuals seems to be of one mind.

Like the schools of fish your customers are enigmatic blends of group and individual think. Behind every like, follow, and subscriber is an individual person with their unique blend of hopes, fears, loves and hates — unless of course you have a fake follower infestation. And yet at the same time each of those individuals form a collective that is more than the sum of its parts.

photo: flickr