Why this dancing guy is my hero
You’ve probably seen the video of the agile – some would say, surprisingly agile – and largish Russian man, breaking out some amazing dance moves in his black Speedo. He appears to be having a great time and to be totally at ease. It seems to me that he doesn’t care what anyone may think – he’s just being himself.
I love this video. It reminded me of an essay, “Unreal World”, by writer and actor Andrew McCarthy. In it, he mused about Hollywood stars’, the nature of attraction and why people decide to have plastic surgery. Specifically, he tried to figure out why he was saddened at the news that one of his rock star idols, a man, admitted to having Botox treatments, leading him to this observation, “Have you ever seen a fat man dance well? It’s a gorgeous thing—somehow even more dazzling than seeing a thin man dance just as well. I think the reason is it boasts a certain joyful confidence born of self-acceptance, which is undeniably attractive. And it’s just that lack of self-acceptance that I see broadcast across my rock star hero’s forehead— when what I know I’m meant to see is a smooth and chiseled polish.”
Great branding is, essentially, totally at ease, in that it’s not striving to be anything other than its utter, core self. Bravely unique. Whether the brand message is intended to comfort, delight, provoke, intrigue or inspire confidence, if you dilute your marketing message in order to appeal to everyone, you lose a huge advantage, the advantage of being “undeniably attractive” to your target customers. Even “dazzling” them!