The word exclude seems harsh and the definition is even more harsh: to reject or not consider; leave out. Do you remember how you felt the last time you were excluded from something? Maybe hurt, offended, crushed or perhaps invisible.
There are maybe a few legitimate reasons to exclude someone/something:
- Children who are not quite tall enough for a ride
- Family and/or friends of a contest/event creator
- Exams and tests, which are specific
- Projects, where you have to work within a specific scope
When creating a product, service or event and you immediately think of people, groups or things that must be excluded, it may be a great time to re-think your project. You only have one time to make a good impression, and if you immediately have to exclude someone or something you can plan on offending someone right away.
Think about how you are representing your brand. Is that the way you want your clients or potential clients to feel? Remember, negative word-of-mouth spreads faster than positive word-of-mouth; even more so through social media. That negativity can topple down your social marketing platform in no time.
Let me give you an example through a five-year-old boy’s point of view.
His friend and classmate invited several children from class to attend his birthday party. This party was cool; food, bounce house, glow-in-the-dark t-shirts, the works.
This little guy told me that he was really, really sad for one of his other friend’s because he didn’t get invited to the party. He went on to say that his friend brought it up to him several times and told him that he didn’t understand why the birthday boy didn’t invite him to his party. He felt so sorry for this boy that he told him not to worry because he would definitely be invited to his next birthday party.
First, I was very impressed with his sensitivity to his friend at such a young age and that he tried to do what he could to make the boy feel better. Then, a little bit of anger and frustration set in for me. Doesn’t the parent realize that this party was most likely the “talk of the class” and that whoever was not invited (e.g., excluded) would get their feelings hurt? Maybe it would have been better for the parent to scale down the party in order to include the entire class rather than leaving some of them out.
People will always remember how you made them feel. Set yourself apart and give a little more. The reward is worth it!