Saturday night I went to summer school, not your typical summer school, but summer school as in Jimmy Buffett's 2009 summer concert SummerZcool.
Never in my wildest imagination did I think I would leave that event with a better understanding of marketing. That assumption couldn't be further from the truth. Buffett has an amazing ability to connect with his audience. Most of 30 or 40 thousand parrot heads have as much in common with Jimmy and his Coral Reefers as I do with the man on the moon. However Buffett connected with everybody. How did he do this....He Kept it Local.
Every imaginable reference to Chicago was made. He talked and sang about Bars on Belmont Street, Hamburgers at the Billygoat, Surfing Lake Michigan, Tourists from Iowa, Hookers from South Cicero and had people on the Southside of Chicago singing Go Cubs Go.
Much has been said about being the local expert. Buffett has been the king of local for his entire career. I have seen him in numerous places at various points in his career and each time he made me think the city and venue he is playing is special. It is this ability to connect that keeps this 62 year old, who has only had a handful of radio hits one of the highest grossing concerts year in and out.
Local appeal and local information is the key to keeping and attracting loyal parrot heads. Weather its real estate, or entertainment, people also want to feel the connection.