How To Build True Fans In a Crowded Closet

What do Amazon, Costco, and Nordstrom all share in common? Besides each having a vibrant (and sometimes risqué) work culture, they all know how to appeal to smart buyers. They have a deep understanding of their audience, that being keen, pragmatic, deal seeking, middle-to-upper class consumers.

These are consumers who demand quality, but are willing to spend a little time poking around for the best price point; consumers who look at reviews to build their trust for a potential product; and finally, consumers who know that time is of the essence so sometimes, instead of making a thorough buying decision, they let the company make the decision for them. 

Loyal fans of Costco, Nordstrom, and Amazon know that if these brands know anything, it’s quality and they don’t compromise for any less. Proof: each hold their own private label brand (Costco with Kirkland Signature, Amazon with AmazonBasics, and Nordstrom with a handful, including 1901 & John W. Nordstrom) which seem to know exactly what you want at an double-take worthy price.

Further proof can be found in the quality of these private-label products: Costco Vodka commonly out performs top brands like Grey Goose in taste tests, AmazonBasics blows  Sharkk and Anker out of the water (quite literally), and Nordstrom’s private labels make shirts, shoes, and slacks that might as well be straight out of Brooks Brothers, Clarks, and Faconnable factories. How and why do they do it?

Because they get people. And even more, they get their audience. In this day and age of the empowered consumer, they would rather not pull the wool over your eyes and instead give you a great deal, at an amazing price point, all with the backing of world class customer support. Can you ask for any more?

As Seth Godin says, “Be genuine. Be remarkable. Be worth connecting with…” so instead of “yelling” at consumers and telling them what they want, these three instead dig into the data and listen. They seek to understand because isn’t that why a company should exist in the first place? To serve, to please, and most importantly connect with their loyal fan.



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