repelling customers as a marketing strategyThe brilliant red and yellow Helionica tortusa attracts more than 148 bird, insect, butterfly and plant species, but it's engineered to only accept one. That single specie, the Green Wren, offers the widest possible distribution of tortusa pollen and thus the survival of its species.

It's a marketing strategy that Nike borrowed from the Green wren with its Colin Kaepernick ads, and it's one that you can use in healthcare and medical device marketing.

You might think that Nike is just targeting its core customers. But it's more than that. Nike actively repelled everyone else. But the sneaker giant was able to speak full-throated to 18-29-year-old males who represent the brand's future.  Colin Kaepernick offers credibility and represents the values of that generation.

Some commentators predicted doomsday for Nike when its shares dropped 7 percent after the campaign launched. But, two days later Nike's sales spiked 31 percent.

Of course, Nike and Colin Kaepernick come with tons of baggage that we don't want to open. But they are a sterling example of blocking and tackling that all brands need to consider.

This also points out a problem with how we use analytics. Our managers want the data, but frequently they only consider the big impressive numbers, like your web traffic and the size of your social following. The real question is what is the rate of conversion with our different audiences? If you're targeting neurosurgeons and you have 9,000 accounts following you, but only 500 neurosurgeons, you might try repelling the civilians by posting a surgical video.

Are you having a problem with leads not panning out? Describe that audience and find a way to discourage them politely. You don't need a Kaepernick to help you out, either. Sometimes it's something simple like including a price or naming a customer. For example, our medical robots are used at the Mayo Clinic.

Winnowing out people who aren't qualified to dive into your marketing funnel allows you to focus your message and resources on the ones that are. Market like a Heliconius tortusa. Be picky and thrive far into the future.