Two weeks ago I launched a Facebook community called I GREW UP IN NEW JERSEY IN THE 60'S 70'S AND 80'S . It is a direct copy of the concept of a great community page called I GREW UP IN SOUTH FLORIDA IN THE 60'S 70'S AND 80'S. The Florida one is so much fun I thought I'd see how it would work for the "Garden State."
DURING THE FIRST WEEK we posted photos of hot dog stands and diners. After the first week ithad about 90 LIKES. TODAY THE COMMUNITY HAS OVER 15,000 LIKES. What happened? Taylor's Ham. An enticing photo of a properly made Taylor's Ham sandwich was posted and the crowd went wild. Today the most viewed, discussed and shared photo is the one you see above. By FAR. There are hundreds of photos in the community, nothing touches the ham. Over 12,000 LIKE the Taylor's Ham.
JUST BELOW THE FILTER. There is a layer of thought just below the last filter in your mind. It's what you are thinking right now, today at lunch, or while talking to your spouse. These thoughts are usually remain unspoken. You filter these thoughts either because they are considered improper or because you have repeatedly found that no one understands what the heck you're talking about.
Natives of New Jersey know about Taylor's Ham. Absolutely no one outside of the State knows about Taylor's Ham. Therefore most New Jerseyans suppress their lunch meat expertise. Obviously other cultures have their own secret brands of ice creams, condiments, and desserts. But New Jersey has Taylor's Ham. (Which is not "just pork roll.") Repeatedly, when traveling out of State, if a New Jerseyan mentions Taylor's Ham they are met with puzzled silence.
Suddenly the sacred Ham appears on a FB page and it is met with an explosion of recognition, respect and gratitude. Taylor's Ham represents proprietary yet common knowledge. Everyone in Jersey knows about it, they just have no one to talk to about it. Review the target audience for any good or service. Consider the passions held by your viewer right below the surface of their awareness. Not the way-deep stuff, just the thoughts bubbling near the surface. Tap into that with a phrase, a picture or simple reminder that the thoughts and passions are valid and the brand-bond will be instant. Consider that all the great stand-up comics, monologists and interviewers work one layer below what you are allowed to express in social situations. The great auteurs from Howard Stern to Iliza Schlesinger to the cast of TMZ usually inspire you to say, "Wow, I was just thinking that."
Three other factors helped to grow the page. We posted a link to the page on the Syracuse University alumni bulletin board--just once for free. A majority of SU students come from New Jersey or downstate New York. Then the TEXT for each photo posted invites LIKES, SHARES and invites the reader into the dynamic of the photo. Finally, the community is nonjudgmental and has no author. Permission marketing. Permission to be yourself.The opinions and points of view expressed in this commentary are exclusively the views of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of MediaBizBloggers.com management or associated bloggers. MediaBizBloggers is an open thought leadership platform and readers may share their comments and opinions in response to all commentaries.