In the sentimental, father-son reconciliation plot Field of Dreams, Ray Kinsella is given a pep-talk from Terrance Mann, "If you build it, he will come."
Maybe it's simply the voice of James Earl Jones playing the sage of baseball's purity and tradition, but I've met more than a few mission-driven souls who hear the "If you build it" line as permission to pursue their dreams and disregard a concern for others (that is, marketing-sense).
Of course, they all celebrate the foolishness and hesitancy of Ray's vision to plow-under his standing corn to create a wasteful baseball field. "It makes no sense" is their rallying cry as they pursue their dreams at all costs - braving the threats of his money-grubbing banker brother-in-law who can only see waste and not the pure romance of what baseball means to so many.
And they also miss the market-savvy advice that accompanies James Earl Jones' speech... because they're too dreamy-eyed to notice why people will come. You see, it's not just about Ray (and his father)... it's about what people want and how they'll gladly pay the cost to gain something of immense value to them.
"Ray. People will come, Ray. They'll come to Iowa for reasons they can't even fathom. They'll turn up your driveway not knowing for sure why they're doing it. They'll arrive at your door as innocent as children, longing for the past. 'Of couse, we won't mind if you look around,' you say, 'It's only $20 per person.' They'll pass over the money without even thinking about it: for it is money they have and peace they lack. And they'll walk out to the bleachers; sit in shirtsleeves on a perfect afternoon. They'll find they have reserved seats somewhere along one of the baselines where they sat when they were children and cheered their heroes. And they'll watch the game and it will be as if they dipped themselves in magic waters. The memories will be so thick they'll have to brush them away from their faces. People will come Ray. The one constant through all the years, Ray, has been baseball. America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers. It has been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt and erased again. But baseball has marked the time. This field, this game: it's a part of our past, Ray. It reminds us of all that once was good and that could be again. Oh... people will come Ray. People will most definitely come."
You see, the wisdom is about what people need, what they want that's even more valuable to them than their money... even if they don't know what it is they want... they are willing to give over their money to see if what you offer can take them there.
And that is not about Ray's virtue, but how his strange calling and mission is justified because people want what he is making possible.
And this is marketing.