My wife put me up for sale today. She sent a note out to all her friends with some of the following selling points: free to good home, sleeps in the dog house without blankets, no need to provide food or water. And then she added: priced to sell, porch pick-up available. What she didn’t say was: expanding older model, makes poor decisions, enabler. These were the real reasons she wanted me sold.
Why? Because I ok’d my 16-year-old daughter to sleep over on Saturday night at her best friend’s house. Her best friend is a boy. Now, before you judge me, I’d like for you to consider the following: it’s a mortal sin to judge others. And please consider these additional points as well…
In communications, whether in business or with our spouse, there are two items we must make primary for our message to be most effective – knowing our audience and the clarity of our message. My daughter knows these items very well. That’s why she asked me, instead of her mother (the audience most likely to agree) and why she texted me the direct message, “may I spend the night” and included terms like “please” and “as a reward for me doing well this year in school” (texting was the most rapid form of delivery; message was brief, clear, and cordial with compelling reasoning.)
Bottom line: it worked. Madison is my youngest daughter, by one minute. She’s the fiercely independent one. The tenacity of this kid rival professional military and law enforcement negotiators. Sophia, her older sister by 60 seconds, is the profoundly emotional one. Emotions are another wonderful method for achieving audience buy-in. We see this storytelling technique quite often, especially from savvy and successful corporations. Budweiser’s Clydesdales, Coca Cola, and McDonalds are three organizations that have mastered this practice for decades.
Powerful imagery tells a story as well. We’re reminded of this in the 1921 quote by advertising executive, Fred R. Barnard, “One picture is worth a thousand words.” You’ll find momentous imagery examples on the cover of National Geographic, sports athlete still shots, and on my daughter’s face when she wants something.
Convincing evidence suggests that emotions play a central role in consumer buying journeys. According to a study published in Psychology Today, by Antonio Damasio, Professor of Neuroscience at the University of Southern California, here are some excerpts:
As we venture into the world each day as caregivers, salespersons, business leaders, service specialists, parents, students, or retirees – let us remember to tell our story with these two items at the forefront: understanding our audience and clarity of messaging.
By the way, I’ve already received a few hits from my wife’s “spouse for sale” advertisement. Seems I need to study up on the “understanding our audience” concept when it comes to my wife. Hmm, where are my reading glasses…
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freedom at work