What do the Grateful Dead have in common with marketing? More than you might think. Sure, they’re an iconic rock band, but they were marketing pioneers, too. Follow some of their marketing ploys to turn around your business.

You have to create your own business model that’s unique. The Dead didn’t focus on selling their albums, instead, they created revenue at their concerts, by allowing their fans to record their concerts and trade the tapes, which created huge word of mouth that brought them more business. They also sold tons of merchandise at the concerts, which other bands weren’t doing. There fans became a kind of cult that still exists today. Your business model has to be unique and different from your competitors.

You need to choose a memorable brand name, too, just like the Grateful Dead. You may not like it, or even understand it, but you have to make it memorable. That’s a key to making your marketing memorable. Even today, the Grateful Dead name is memorable, and a bit quirky, too.

Create a unique and different marketing department. Bring in new members to liven it up, bring in fresh talent, and spark new excitement. You want lively ads that are electrifying and brand new, and experiment with new ideas.

Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. The Grateful Dead were always changing and evolving, and every concert was unique and different. They experimented all the time, and made each performance unique and fun for their fans. They learned from their mistakes to make their next performance better, and you can do the same with your marketing. This means thinking outside the box with your marketing efforts, like blogging, using social networking, or other options.

Don’t be afraid to lose control of your marketing messages and build a community. The Grateful Dead had fun with what they were doing, and so should you. Look around at your customers and what they’re saying about you, and let them define your message. The Grateful Dead controlled their own ticket sales, and that allowed them to sell and connect directly with their fans, and their fans were much more loyal as a result.

The Grateful Dead knew how to market to their fans, and their fans loved them all the more for it. Learn how to market to your customers, and gain more loyal customers when you do.

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