Derek Sivers

Proudly exclude some people

2000-02-02

Proudly say what you’re not. “If you like Adele, you’ll hate us.” Then people who hate Adele will love that you said that, and give you a chance.

You can’t please everyone in this world. Recklessly exclude people.

Almost like you’re the doorman at an exclusive club that plays only your music. They refuse anyone who is under 21, or over 50. Maybe they also refuse anyone wearing a suit, or anyone without a tattoo.

But know who you are, and have the confidence that somewhere out there, there’s a little niche of people that would like your kind of music. They may only be 1% of the population. But 1% of the world is 65 million people!

Loudly leave out 99% of the world. When someone in your target 1% hears you excluding the part of the population they already feel alienated from, they’ll be drawn to you.

Write down a list of artists who you don’t like, and whose fans probably wouldn’t like you. Use that.