Use This Core Psychological Trigger To Get Your Customers To Grow Your Business For You and Become Raving Fans

As humans we’re hardwired with the desire to belong to a tribe.

What do I mean?

As human beings we are still social animals.

We’re driven by a powerful biological instinct to want to be a part of something bigger than ourselves. We feel more fulfilled inside a community and when we’re surrounded by people who have similar goals and values.

In the modern world, we have the freedom to choose what tribes we want to belong to. Usually that choice is based on a group, club, nation or even a brand.

It’s easy to underestimate just how powerful this tribal identity is, because it’s not easy to control or create on purpose. We’d all love the raving fans that Harley Davidson, Apple or other “cult” brands have created but figuring it out is a different story.

Is there a way to intentionally engineer our business to create that kind of belonging?

Create A Tribal Identity People Want To Be Part Of

For your business to tap into a deeper identity , it needs to represent more than just a product or service. Your customers need to feel like they are part of something more than a transaction.
Declare what you stand for. Plant your flag firmly in the ground. Make yourself a beacon to like-minded people.
Your brand cannot just be a brand. It should represent an identity or lifestyle your customers want to aspire to.
Swiss psychologist Carl Jung did a lot of work on archetypes. These are common character types that are instantly recognizable to pretty much anyone. In movies and TV, for example, it’s not hard to tell who’s the Jester, the Hero, the Sage or the Explorer.
It’s easy for people to relate to archetypes because they’re so familiar. These ready-made identities are sitting in your customers’ unconscious just waiting to be tapped into… and smart companies do just that.
For example, Harley Davidson is all about being an outlaw. It’s about being free of restrictive rules and social norms.
Yes, I know Harley owners aren’t actually a bunch of criminals. That’s not the point.
The point is they’re buying that feeling of freedom just as much as they’re buying a bike. They’re buying an identity.
Another example: Burning Man is about uninhibited self-expression. (Think “radical freedom” as the identity here.)
If your brand is strongly associated with a particular identity, people will actually identify themselves by your brand! For example, “I’m a Burner,” “I’m a Trekkie,” or “I’m a Maverick.” They’re telling you what tribe they belong to!
“Ok,” I hear you thinking. “But what exactly can I do?” Here are a few things you can try…

4 Ways To Align Your Brand With A Tribal Identity

#1. Origin Story

What drove you to do what you’re doing? What is the WHY behind your business?
We all have a story behind what we do. Something influenced or inspired us to create the business that we did.

Your story reveals a lot to your customers about your motivations and values. It gives them something to relate to – and identify with.
So use it in your marketing. If you created a nutritional supplement designed to lower cholesterol because your dad had a heart attack, tell that story.

#2. Insider Language

One way we can identify who’s in our tribe and who’s not is through insider language.

Do you have special words that only the “in” group knows what they mean?Do you have a special term for your customers that identifies them as members of your tribe?
Work on creating internal language for your community to use. If you can get your customers using your secret language, that strengthens the association between their identity and your brand. For instance, with Maverick1000 members we use terms like “Maverick Moments”, ‘Maverick Multipliers”, “Maverick Mayhem” and “green pills” inside our group.

#3. Creeds

A creed is basically a statement of your principles. It’s as clear and overt as you can get. It tells people exactly what you stand for. No need for guessing.
A clear creed will attract the people who are right for your tribe, and repel those who aren’t.
Use a creed to declare your values, and make it publicly available. Being authentic about what you stand for is a great way to gain the trust of like-minded people.

#4. Barriers and Hurdles

The most valuable groups to be in are the ones that are hard to get into! How valuable is membership in a group if anyone can join?

If you make your group exclusive and difficult to join, the people who get in will be proud to be a member. They’ll feel a sense of accomplishment and camaraderie with the others who made it in. That does a lot to strengthen the identity of the group.

So make your customers jump through a few hoops if it’s appropriate for your business.

When you put these community-building methods into practice, you’ll start to enjoy a far more loyal customer base who will buy from you over and over… Not to mention rabidly promoting your brand to all their friends and family.

Businesses who get this right grow much faster and more sustainably – while spending less on marketing and advertising.

But don’t limit yourself to the techniques I’ve listed here. There are lots of other ways to build a rock-solid identity into your brand – some of which haven’t been invented yet!

So don’t be afraid to be creative. Just make sure everything you do reinforces a desirable identity, and you’ll be on the right track.


Yanik Silver has developed a complete framework for building businesses that deliver more impact, meaning and happiness. His book, Evolved Enterprise, shows you specific strategies and business models for building a core purpose into your business… while also driving higher profits!

You can find the book at It’ll show you an in-depth process for building a community of raving fans who will relentlessly promote your brand.

He’s giving away the first 25,000 copies at cost to help spread the message, so you can get it very cheap if you act fast.