Rohit Bhargava’s 3 Ways to Better Serve Your Audience

Author: Jasmine Zhu       

Rohit Bhargava

Rohit Bhargava signs copies of his book, “Non-Obvious 2019: How To Predict Trends And Win The Future,” during Convening Leaders 2019 in Pittsburgh. (Elaine Manusakis)

Rohit Bhargava, founder of the Non-Obvious Company and an entrepreneur with more than 10 years of experience working at major ad agencies, has a few ideas to help event professionals market their events more effectively — while establishing trust with their audience.

Rohit Bhargava

Rohit Bhargava

Here are three takeaways from his Convening Leaders session, “The Believability Crisis: How to Build Trust/Stand Out.”

Be Unselfish

“Put your audience first,” Bhargava said. While this sounds like familiar marketing jargon, Bhargava believes that doing so can help unlock creative thinking.

He provided the example of a Sainsbury supermarket in Scotland, which introduced a “relaxed” checkout lane last summer to better serve customers — including those with dementia and the elderly — who need more time to shop.

The supermarket made headlines in news outlets including Gizmodo and The Independent for its simple and thoughtful approach to customer care.

Use Timing to Your Advantage

When Domino’s Pizza began reinventing itself —introducing the Pizza Tracker in 2008 so customers could track every stage of their order in real time and tweaking its recipe in 2009 — smaller pizza chains were worried about going out of business, Bhargava said. But one in particular, Anthony’s Pizza & Pasta, used Domino’s new initiatives to its advantage, with a billboard ad that read: “We’ve never had to change our recipe. Because it never sucked.”

Anthony’s ad, which received attention in AdWeek and Eater, helped position the smaller pizza chain in a better light than its mega-sized competitor.

“There’s always a way to make timing work in your favor,” Bhargava said. “Even if you’re up against the big guy.”

Get Out of Your Comfort Zone

In order to gain new perspectives, Bhargava reminds himself to buy magazines that aren’t targeted toward his demographic, even picking up Teen Vogue at the airport. He said that this helps give him more empathy for people who don’t share the same interests as him.

“By buying these magazines I take myself out of my bubble,” Bhargava said. It “forces you to think more broadly. You can be more creative.”

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Rohit Bhargava

Rohit Bhargava meets with attendees after his Convening Leaders session, “The Believability Crisis: How to Build Trust/Stand Out.” (Elaine Manusakis)