I recently learned about Grey Poupon’s Facebook strategy, which offers a “member’s only” section to select fans based on an automated screening process. Here’s the deal (according to Jon Thomas):
According to the brand’s Pinterest page, which also serves as its website, the mustard is “synonymous with all that is refined, exquisite and delicious.” So, like country clubs and gated communities, Grey Poupon’s Facebook page is not open to just anyone. No, it’s a “discerning Facebook Society that rewards those who spread good taste,” and you have to apply to become a member.
So naturally, I had to know if I was elite enough to make the cut. I was not, by the way. My application was “declined.” And honestly, I don’t even know what to do with that.
The crazy part is that I hate mustard. As in, LOATHE it. If you put mustard – Grey Poupon or otherwise – or something I’m supposed to eat, I’ll clam up three-year-old-style and completely refuse to put it in my mouth. Period. But now, in some ironic twist of fate, I’m desperately seeking approval from a condiment I reject frequent basis.
What is going on?!
The rest of the story is that I reapplied and was accepted the second time. You heard right: I REAPPLIED for elite membership on a mustard page. We must be in the twilight zone. Well, ether that or Grey Poupon is doing something genius here. Let’s explore the latter.
It’s human nature to want to feel important. We crave approval, acceptance, and recognition that we’re worthy. In a lot of ways, brands are no different. That’s why most brands spend marketing dollars asking you to fan them on Facebook. They’re craving approval, acceptance, and recognition that they’re worthy from their customers.
Grey Poupon flipped this idea on its head. Instead of begging for acceptance FROM you, they offer it TO you.
I went out of my way to interact with a brand twice… and not just any brand – a brand that makes a product I don’t even like. And I did it because they appealed to a need inside of me that most brands don’t consider.
It’s those strategies that turn heads in a saturated online culture.