Wednesday Thought: Stay Loyal

Why you like what you like...

Top of the mornin’ to ya!

I’m risking getting lost in your Wednesday morning newsletter shuffle.

But I’ve done crazier things, like letting someone sponsor the newsletter that I’ve never met in person before.

Matthew Kammerer works over at BuySellAds. They have a pretty nifty concept of not only selling premium newsletter inventory, but doing so at a sweet discount. He’ll probably be my go-to sales guy if I ever scale this puppy, but to be honest, he’s paying me to say that.

Give Matthew a shout; I’ve met with his team, and they are really great folks who are looking to give brands on a tight budget a chance at premium inventory they wouldn’t have access to otherwise.

Looking for sponsors. We have a grand total of 93 subs (!!!) so as always, the price has gone up. $2.79. venmo @danny-weisman.

Also, today is the last day of my free trial with beehiiv. I’ve liked what I’ve seen, so I’m paying these fine people $500 for 12 months to keep this ramshackle going. I’m committed to giving you every waking thought that comes to my mind.

Onto a thought … no brain dump today, gotta keep the tank full if I’m going to fulfill my $500 promise to you…

Weds thought

Loyalty above all. I’ve had about 5 different people send me this New York Times article from over the weekend about Dave Matthews Band fans.

If you know me, you know that I have the unfortunate honor of having an encyclopedic knowledge about the band’s history. I’ve seen them 37 times (which is actually low for DMB standards), and despite a general decline in their quality of new music, I’ve kept the train runnin’ for almost 18 years.

Why? I love the tradition. I love the memories. I love the friends I go with. I love that the concerts are like a pack of cards; each show is slightly different from the last.

But most of all, I just like what I’m used to.

A lot has been written about loyalty in marketing. Research suggests it’s bullshit; only the bigger brands have more loyal customers, because they are, after all, bigger. Or that retention is a product problem, not something that marketing needs to solve for.

Sometimes I believe this. But then I think of good ol’ DMB. And I think that despite streaming being so en vogue, I’ll probably never get rid of cable. I grew up with it, certain shows raised me. On some level, I’ll always want it around in the background, my adult babysitter.

I think about that with this young generation of babies and kids. They are growing up hooked on iPhones and YouTube and Disney+ and Netflix. When the new shiny thing or metawhatever rolls around, do we really think they’ll abandon the media that raised them?

So maybe the cable cliff is overrated. It’s more of a decline, and then a plateau.

And then I think of how I make decisions as a customer. You would think that the more important the decision, the safer you tend to be. The more likely you are to pick a big brand you already know about. “No one got fired for recommending IBM.”

But 2023 is a different world. Information is at your finger tips. It’s a click away. We live in a society that gives you potential lifelong partners to choose from as swipes. When the decision gets harder or tougher, we do more diligence, more research, and seem to have less loyalty to what we previously knew or trusted.

But when the decision is easy, we go with what we know. I want a soda, I get the one I’ve always liked. I have to decide what to watch on TV, I’ll trust an HBO show over any other because I know it’s quality.

When the decisions are small or don’t matter as much, loyalty wins. When the decisions are bigger or have more ramifications, loyalty loses.

And because it’s never a big decision to see the Dave Matthews Band band - they come to NYC quite often - I’ll go. But when they age and time is up and they only play one show a year, in a far off place? I’ll have to think about it.

(Shout-out to Barry Dan for some inspiration on this one).

Stay thunkin,