If you tried to purchase tickets to Adele’s upcoming concert tour or listened to her critically acclaimed album “25”, you know Adele is a huge star. Many people believe it’s all about her killer voice. I disagree. She does have a rich and powerful voice, but so do other people. Look at the contestants on “The Voice” or “American Idol” and you will find many people with great voices. The Academy Award-Winning documentary “20 Feet From Stardom” chronicles six legendary backup singers. These individuals have phenomenal voices but were unable to launch solo careers. That’s because it takes more than just talent.
To gain “Adele-sized” success you need both talent and an emotional connection with your fans. Beyond her voice, Adele sings the best breakup songs that we all relate to. She is down to earth and real. She works in an industry obsessed with body image yet she swats away criticism of her body with statements like “I don’t want to be on the cover of Playboy or Vogue. I want to be on the cover of Rolling Stone or Q.” She doesn’t take herself too seriously and curses on stage like she’s at a bar with friends. She’s a regular person like you and me who happens to have an outstanding voice.
Creating an emotional connection makes sense in the context of a Rockstar, but does it have any relevance in the business world?
Patagonia sells high quality outerwear that looks great and lasts long. What makes them unique to their fiercely loyal clients is their commitment to the environment and the effective programs they put in place to minimize the environmental footprint of the organization and their clients. They actually encourage clients to fix damaged clothing rather than buying a replacement. As a result of this deep connection, Patagonia is the first option when their clients need outerwear. This connection is why Starbucks is the favourite meeting spot for coffee lovers. Just the same way that Amazon is the “go-to” site for books and……just about everything else.
Having a great voice or product is half the equation. The emotional connection creates devoted fans.