I can relate to Sting’s Englishman In New York – I often feel like a legal alien. I know this may sound dramatic but let me explain.
In a time when the use of social media is prevalent, we are given a unique insight into the world of the individual, their behaviour, their thoughts, their opinions. When I look at the comments some of my twitter networkers post I often feel like I’m a being from outer space who has been deposited into an unfamiliar world.
I’m really not worried about who has won the latest baking contest or the names of a cast of nobodies participating in the latest reality TV series, but it appears that I am in the minority as there are an awful lot of people out there do.
It reminds me of the fabulous scene in Monty Python’s Life of Brian where a huge crowd has gathered and were agreeing with whatever Brian said. At one point he declared: “You are all individuals,” to which the crowd echoed: “Yes, we are all individuals.” It was followed by a lone voice that declared: “I’m not.” Sometimes I feel like that lone voice.
Now, I’m not denying that grouping people with similar characteristics is essential for the purposes of marketing communications. After all, segmentation of the population and targeting specific audiences are the cornerstone of every single campaign. But is it necessary for all us to act the same, dress the same, look the same…even think the same?
Probably the only characteristic that every single one of us shares is that we are all unique so I’ve decided to celebrate my individuality, even if it does risk alienation. As Sting sang: “Be yourself, no matter what they say.”