We’re of­ten asked, whom should we tar­get with neg­a­tive mar­ket­ing?

There are a few op­tions, start­ing with, the most ob­vi­ous:

The most ob­vi­ous peo­ple to tar­get are your weak com­peti­tors. If some­one search­es for them, you can dou­bly re­in­force the most neg­a­tive ex­pe­ri­ence of their cus­tomers on­line.

Just think about the math: if a cus­tomer has 10% of the mar­ket, and we can de­crease that to, say, 7.5% of the mar­ket, a fall of 25%. Well, it’s a rea­son­able as­sump­tion that, that 25% lost will be di­vid­ed even­ly (ac­cord­ing to the pro­por­tions of cur­rent sales) to the cur­rent play­ers in the space. Thus, you’re like­ly to in­crease your sales a bit!

Plus, it feels good.

THe sec­ond group to tar­get are your strong com­peti­tors. That’s hard­er be­cause, as stronger play­ers with more hands in the cards, they’ll al­ready have a strong rep­u­ta­tion, so mak­ing them look bad is much hard­er to achieve.

But we have our meth­ods, don’t wor­ry! Want to know how we tar­get our strong com­peti­tors? Just ask! :)

The third group to go af­ter are peo­ple who are not nec­es­sar­i­ly your com­peti­tors, but peo­ple at a high-risk to cause some sort of ma­jor prob­lem. Maybe a part­ner, maybe an ex-em­ploy­ee.

A key point to re­mem­ber is, ex­pos­ing oth­er peo­ple’s (true!) neg­a­tive ac­tions to the world is a great in­sur­ance pol­i­cy: it mas­sive­ly in­cen­tivizes them to act well to­wards you be­cause you can make them look bad end­less­ly!