September 20, 2023

Individuals like to hate Steven Singer.

That “hate” is so pervasive that the jewellery retailer’s web site is: The corporate is so dedicated to celebrating the “hate” that it doesn’t even personal the area

What’s behind all that “hate” pervading Philadelphia radio and satellite tv for pc airwaves? (The corporate says it’s the longest-running advertiser on The Howard Stern Present.) It’s the story of buyer suggestions (probably apocryphal) that launched a advertising marketing campaign that’s lasted for years.

It’s additionally a narrative concerning the energy of contrarian pondering – a useful reminder for content material entrepreneurs.

@IHSS (I Hate Steven Singer) shows the power of contrarian thinking, a useful #ContentMarketing lesson, says @AnnGynn via @CMIContent. Click To Tweet

Contrarian technique stands out in a gift-driven market

The web site’s Historical past web page recounts the origin story: A Steven Singer customer returned 20 years after buying an engagement ring to purchase one other diamond ring for his or her anniversary. About 9 months later, the couple returned to the jewellery retailer to point out off their new child. The spouse exclaimed, “I like Steven Singer,” to which the husband responded, “Right here we go once more. We’re up all evening with feedings and diaper adjustments. I HATE Steven Singer.”

(Right here’s the audio explanation used in their commercials.)

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Steven Singer Jewelers turned that humorous remark right into a model standpoint.

A weblog put up referred to as Why Hate Steven Singer explains recounts why massive retailer jewelers hate Steven Singer:

  • Steven Singer Jewelers says it doesn’t low cost as a result of it gives the perfect value from the start and mocks different jewelers’ massive low cost gross sales
  • The unbiased jeweler criticizes the lower-quality diamonds bought by the large shops, referring to them by their business title, “frozen spit.”
  • Steven Singer lets prospects improve purchases from the corporate by giving them a trade-in worth equal to the value they initially paid.

The contrarian messaging continues all through the positioning. The location record the enterprise handle as “the opposite nook of Eighth and Walnut” in Philadelphia. Even the Oops message (proven under) continues the theme, declaring, “Steven hated this web page … so he moved it. Strive these as a substitute.”

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The right way to craft a contrarian content material advertising strategy

A contrarian or unfavorable strategy can remodel your content material advertising technique.

The purpose is to get your viewers to say, “Wait, what?!”

Subverting the expectations of audiences dulled to related messaging provides them pause – and entices them to decipher what you’re speaking about.

You possibly can apply parts of reverse or unfavorable pondering to particular person belongings or make it the “voice” of your content material, as Steven Singer does.

A contrarian, unfavorable, or opposite-thinking technique is daring –some individuals might not perceive what you’re doing. Simply make sure that your model’s management does. In any other case, they’ll cease it nearly as quickly as you publish it.

Listed here are a couple of methods to place that technique into motion (as soon as it’s authorised).

A contrarian or negative #ContentStrategy is bold. Not everyone will get it. Just make sure your leadership does, says @AnnGynn via @CMIContent Click To Tweet

Write an sudden lead

Begin small by crafting introductions to articles utilizing reverse messaging. This small step can assist you take a look at whether or not your viewers is receptive to this strategy.

Do this train internally to make sure your group understands what you need them to do: Give the writers an article you already revealed and ask them to rewrite the lead following the contrarian, unfavorable, or opposite-thinking technique.


Fast Company published an article with this intro:

After almost three years of a worldwide pandemic and months, if not years, of working from residence, the principle factor drawing staff again to their places of work is the need to easily give attention to their work. However on the identical time, places of work within the U.S. have hit a 15-year low on the subject of how efficient they’re for enabling centered work.

This troubling mismatch is without doubt one of the prime takeaways from the 2022 U.S. Workplace Survey from the Gensler Analysis Institute, the analysis arm of the worldwide structure and design agency Gensler.

Contrarian-strategy revision:

U.S. staff don’t know what they’re speaking about.

That’s the revelation from the 2022 U.S. Office Survey from the Gensler Analysis Institute.

Its survey discovered the most well-liked purpose for staff desirous to return to the workplace is to give attention to their particular person work. But, it additionally finds U.S. places of work are at a 15-year low in how efficient they’re for enabling centered work.

The unique model focuses on what individuals say they need. The negative-strategy model exposes the mismatch between what individuals say they need and the truth of workplace environments.

The tone is eye-catchingly unfavorable, and the sentence makes a U.S.-based viewers curious to find why they might be fallacious.

Dig deeper for thought management content material

You’ll appeal to an even bigger viewers in case your thought management isn’t the identical previous usual. However that doesn’t imply you must take an opposing view in case you don’t consider it.

The following time you deal with a thought management asset, analysis what’s already written or mentioned concerning the subject and the way it’s usually expressed. Then, ask in case your view on the subject differs out of your content material opponents’.

If that’s the case, brainstorm the chances and choose the one most related to your viewers. If not, you may nonetheless create one thing totally different by in search of an underdeveloped or unaddressed level or angle on this subject.

When reacting to revealed analysis, most individuals write thought management items across the first statistic or two. To create one thing that bucks the mainstream (with out taking an reverse view you don’t consider), go deeper into the outcomes. Discover totally different stats related to your curiosity viewers and body your content material round that.

You’ll attract more attention if your approach to thought leadership avoids the same-old story, says @AnnGynn via @CMIContent. Click To Tweet


Let’s use the 2022 U.S. Workplace Survey once more. The Quick Firm article centered on the office effectiveness chart offered on the webpage for the report (because the screenshot under reveals).

Screenshot showing a research chart near the top of Gensler site page called How can we design a more compelling office of the future?

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Surprising various:

However you may dig deeper into the analysis to discover a contemporary angle.

With most individuals centered on the primary or most evident chart, search for one thing much less anticipated buried deeper within the analysis.

The chart on the backside of the report internet web page (as proven within the screenshot under) seems to be on the respondents’ “very best combine” of experiences for a corporation office. The chart reveals the odds for eight classes: clubhouse, espresso store, library, inventive lab, boutique lodge, residential, convention middle, and company.

Screenshot showing a research chart near the bottom of a website page.

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A content material marketer in a related business may craft a thought management piece across the workplace experiences staff need.

Assume past content material creation

Whereas the Steven-Singer technique is sensible for content material creation, it can also work for different elements of your content material advertising program.

Entrepreneurs usually need to know the perfect time and day to ship an e-mail, put up to social, and so on. You do a Google search and find Tuesdays are the best day to send emails. That very same report signifies that the perfect time to ship e-mail is between 9 a.m. and midday.

In fact, since so many others will see that very same window listed as a greatest follow, e-mail inboxes get flooded between 9 a.m. on midday on Tuesdays. Why not ship your emails later within the day or on a distinct day of the week?

Take a look at the alternate ship time for a couple of weeks to see if that opposite-thinking technique works in your viewers. If not, you may at all times change again.

Don’t neglect about your content material codecs, both.

CMI’s most up-to-date B2B analysis discovered that almost all entrepreneurs (89%) use articles and posts of lower than 1,500 phrases for content material advertising. Different generally used codecs embrace:

  • Movies of any size (75%)
  • Case research (67%)
  • Digital occasions/webinars/on-line programs (62%)
  • Infographics/charts/knowledge visualization/3D fashions (61%)
  • Lengthy articles/posts (greater than 1,500 phrases)
  • E-books and white papers (59%)
  • In-person occasions (49%)

Then again, solely 17% of entrepreneurs use print magazines and books.

That’s an opposite-strategy alternative. Might you develop a print journal in your viewers? Given how few entrepreneurs do, your content material would stand out.

If print isn’t possible, take into consideration different lesser-used sorts, akin to audio content material (utilized by 33% of entrepreneurs), analysis reviews (utilized by 30%), or livestreaming content material (16%).

TIP: An opposite-thinking technique for content material codecs doesn’t require you to desert the unique format. Search for methods to repurpose content material deliberate for well-liked codecs into less-used ones.

You can apply an opposite-thinking content strategy without rejecting common formats, says @AnnGynn via @CMIContent. Click To Tweet

Turn into probably the most ‘hated’ content material advertising

Your content material opponents will solely proceed to develop within the months, many years, and years to return. The necessity to stand out and appeal to consideration and curiosity out of your viewers by no means goes away.

With that in thoughts, adopting a Steven-Singer technique in your content material is sensible. And who is aware of? It would simply be the ticket to outcomes that everyone likes.

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Cowl picture by Joseph Kalinowski/Content material Advertising Institute