Social Media and Showtime's Dexter

Say Hello To The Anti-Hero

Conventional, predictable and anti-climatic: all words that describe a story that misses the mark and becomes somewhat normcore. It’s the little secrets, social insecurities and mystery that draw us to want more.

How does this relate to marketing, you ask? It’s about creating a story. “Follow me – don’t miss a moment of my unpredictable journey.” That’s how your marketing messages need to make your target audience feel. We as a society no longer relate to Captain America and the traditional do-gooder. We see more excitement in the Dexters or Robin Hoods of the world. They are alluring, they have secrets, they come from struggle and usually depict the darker aspects of human life. At some point along their journey, you find something you can relate to. It’s not that different with marketing today–you want to grab the consumer’s attention and create a bond with them. That’s what will keep them coming back.

So how can you use this technique to establish and promote your brand? If you’re a small company wanting to get your name out, tell it like it is. Highlight the positives, and add a twist to those not-so-glamorous moments. Maybe share your story about a personal challenge or struggle that led you to starting your own business. Who doesn’t love a person or brand that came from nothing and now has a successful company? Use that. Exploit that. Create your brand’s story from the very beginning. Don’t leave out the nitty gritty struggles or frailties. They make you even more relatable. Also, don’t forget how important imagery is in constructing your plot line. As the age-old saying goes, “A picture is worth a thousand words.” Not only will an image captivate your audience, but it can show the evolution of your brand, which is ever growing and adapting.

Now, we’re not saying you need to go share all the deepest, darkest corners of your past. Just don’t forget, people tend to like the anti-hero.

For larger companies or more established brands, starting from the beginning may not be the best solution, but you can use the same concept. A good example is Allstate Insurance. They created a whole campaign around “protecting yourself from ‘mayhem.’” Allstate established a “mayhem” persona that can be continually modified and adapted along the way. I think most of us have experienced that “oh crap” moment when something goes wrong (especially when it comes to cars, houses, or other big ticket items). That character keeps Allstate top-of-mind. Isn’t that where you’d like your business to be?

Hopefully this helps you think outside of the box. It’s time to get those creative juices flowing. Good luck!

However, if you find yourself too busy running your business and need some help finding your brand’s voice, contact us here: