I just read in Yahoo Sports News today that the Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks are selling vials of water for charity. The vials of water are actually melted ice from the United Center Arena on which they skated when they played the Boston Bruins in the Stanley Cup playoffs.
Wow. Doesn’t that just blow your mind? The things that loyal fans will buy from their favorite teams.
That got me thinking. Loyal fans, whether they be sports fans or music fans, will buy just about anything from those they are loyal to.
This has to do with the phenomena of articles of perceived value. I recently read a fascinating book called The Seven Laws of Magical Thinking – How Irrational Beliefs Keep Us Happy Healthy and Sane. In it the author describes how a seemingly random object can hold almost special powers, just because somebody famous touched it.
In the book, Matthew Hutson describes how the piano John Lennon used to compose the song Imagine gets taken on tour to places where catastrophe has hit. For example, after Hurricane Katrina struck New Orleans, the piano was taken there. Normal everyday people could touch and play the piano. This interaction left people feeling full of hope and inspiration. Can you “imagine” doing that with any ordinary piano? That would be utterly silly.
It just begs the question, “What are your fans willing to buy from you?” How can you be creative and think of unique things that you could offer to your fans to inspire hope? Some musicians throw used guitar picks, drum sticks and sweaty towels into the audience. The overjoyed recipient exclaims, “I’ll never wash this!” Gross. Gross, but powerful. Yes, this is how to make money selling your sweaty socks. Autograph them, then put them up for sale on your website. Tell your fans that these are the socks you wore on your latest tour. You’ll be surprised at the response you get.
You could really hit it off well if the proceeds from the sale of your sweaty socks goes to clothing children in 3rd world countries. You’ll be a star in everyone’s eyes!