An Interesting Thought

Learning New Stuff

Here’s something that I’ll bet almost everybody ‘knows’, but nobody wants to admit, especially if you’re writing information books…

People don’t want to learn new stuff. They don’t want to be corrected on misinformation that they’ve had for years. If they don’t already know what you’re trying to tell them, they don’t want to know at all.

Many people are happily cozened in ignorance. They’re happy with what they think they know and they get decidedly unhappy when someone else tries to pop them out of their nice, happy bubble. These are people who will happily buy any new ‘latest and greatest’ ebook, gizmo or gadget that promises to make their life easier, but they don’t want to use it, in case it shows their previous ignorance.

So how can we, as marketers, get round this mental road block and convince them that we do know what we’re talking about, that the information that we have is required by our customers?

The first thing to do is to phrase things in relation to what they already know and cling to. They may already be aware that ‘the money is in the list’, and by introducing our new list building product with that phrase, we are getting onside with them by using language they already are happy with. We can then lead them away from familiar territory  by qualifying the statement with, ‘the money is in the targeted list’ and by only adding one word we are carefully guiding them in a more appropriate direction. Of course, depending on what we are marketing (we don’t ‘sell’) to our customers, may mean that we need to introduce or change whole phrases, but the point is it can be done via the familiar words already known.

Another method of changing customer’s thinking patterns is to be established as an expert. A voice of authority, a trusted guide. Obviously this is easier if you’ve already sold products of quality and your name is recognised or can be searched with no negative results.

The final way that I’ll discuss for now is friends recommendations. The word of mouth from the ‘bloke down the pub’ is more trusted than 1000 written words on a page. This is why a ‘tell a friend’ page is a popular and useful marketing tactic. If their friend has been convinced enough to change their mind then the follow the pack mentality means that if it’s good enough for him, it will be good enough for me too. When you give away your freebies, ask the new subscriber to recommend 3 to 5 friends and see how many of them also sign up. The form is pretty easy to add to any page and all you need to do is write a catchy headline and email as if from a friend that will automatically be sent to any emails put in by the original subscriber. I would suggest that you don’t make it a condition to supply 3 to 5 emails before they can download the book, as you’ll only end up with a large number of fake addresses.

So one simple idea that I saw in another article inspired this little piece that may just help you when you decide to next approach your customers. Consider where they are in their thoughts and where you’d like them to be, then create the road between these two places. It doesn’t have to be a straight line to be efficient.

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