Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Reality Ain't All It's Cracked Up To Be

As a former washed up, two bit musician, I like going to see "tribute bands"--those rock bands that dress up, act and play like the classic rock bands from the past. I've seen tribute bands cover the Beatles, the Doors and others.

I just saw a Doors tribute band and along with much of the audience, I was disappointed. The band was confused between songs, they played and sang sloppy at times and they didn't play the songs that we came to hear--they played some obscure songs that were better off not heard. My wife turned to me during one of those songs and asked, "What song is that, I've never heard it before." I answered her, "It's the least popular song from one of the Door's least successful albums."

It dawned on me what the problem was. The tribute band was too realistic--the original Doors would have behaved the same way--playing songs they liked as opposed to what the audience wanted, for example. Most of the audience wanted to hear the Doors greatest hits played and sung well note for note just like they did on their albums. Like the original Doors, this band didn't pay attention to what the audience wanted, it just wanted to be the "Doors."

Maybe this same holds true in business. People love a message that feels good. They don't want needless realism if it gets in the way of that message or that feeling.

Maybe reality ain't all it's cracked up to be...

Barry LaBov
LaBov and Beyond Marketing Communications

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