Thursday, July 30, 2009

The Five Most Important Words in Marketing

“I’ve heard of you before!”

Those are the five most important words in marketing.

Because it’s all about mindshare – NOT marketshare.

And so, your success is a function of the following interrelated factors.

1. How often you hear those five words.
2. How positive people’s subsequent comments are.
3. How carefully you listen to and write down those comments.
4. How frequently you repeat the original actions that led to those comments.

After all, when people tell you what they remember about you…

They’re telling you who you are.
Which is (potentially) different from who you thought you were.

They’re telling you how they experience you.
Which is the only judgment people can make about you.

They’re telling you which of your actions are most memorable.
Which is invaluable feedback about which of your efforts are working.

They’re telling you what to continue (or discontinue) in the future.
Which is a powerful tool for staying focused.

They’re telling you the current balance of your reputational asset.
Which is the single determinant of becoming more bookable, referable and invokable.

So, when people say they’ve heard of you before, the next step is to listen closely to their physiology. Because people’s bodies will always tell you the truth – even if their lips are lying.

Let’s look at three examples:

First, when someone who’s heard of you comes up to meet you for the first time, observe the changes in her body.

For example: Did her posture assemble? Did her eyebrows dance? And did her pupils dilate? If so, she’s probably telling the truth.

Second, part of this listening process – because that’s all we’re talking about here, listening – is asking people to give you specific feedback about WHAT they heard and HOW they heard it. That way you can find the rock that created the ripple. And then you can go throw more rocks.

You might consider asking questions like:

o “How did you hear about me?”
o “What – specifically – did you like most about (x)?
o “Can you give me an example of how (x) has been helpful to your world?”

Lastly, an approach that I frequently use for leveraging those “I’ve heard of your before” moments is to say:

“Thanks Mary! It’s funny you should say that. I'm currently writing a module about (x), and I would love to get your opinion on something. Would you be willing to share with me 3-5 bullet points about why you liked my (x)? I request this NOT in a ‘tell me why I'm so great’ way, but rather, ‘tell me what worked so I can replicate it and help others do the same.’ Cool?”

In most instances, people are HAPPY to offer specific feedback.

But only if you stop, ask and listen to what’s behind those five beautiful words, “I’ve heard about you before.”

REMEMBER: Pay careful attention to what people tell you they remember about you.

Because that’s who you are.

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* * * *
Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author, Speaker, Coach, Entrepreneur
scott@hellomynameisscott.com

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