A few weeks ago, Techli.com, the dynamic Venture Capital & Entrepreneurship news site, invited me to be a guest writer which launched me into a humorous dialogue with founder and CEO Edward Domain.
Through a ping pong game of ideas relevant to his readership, Mr. Domain wrote jokingly that 'Flattery gets you everywhere these days!'.
Certainly, flattery is used indiscriminately and intentionally, that I can't deny. Yet, I've found there is significant marketing power in persuasion, sans manipulation! (FYI: 'sans' is 'without'! In other words, you don't want to be sans translation for your foreign clients!)
Along the way, here's three things I've noticed about persuasion:
- It's about listening versus hearing. Is there anything more frustrating than carefully articulating a challenge to a service provider, for example, only to be presented with a 'solution' to a different problem than yours? Listening is just the first step but there's no such thing as too much!
Clients take notice when you meet their specific challenge with a custom solution. Certainly obvious, but too often overlooked. (If you've had a warranty challenge, you understand perfectly!)
- Encouragement tops a compliment any day! Think about the most meaningful words you've been told. Encouragement usually centers on resilience, professional or personal. As opposed to a compliment, encouragement recognizes an obstacle you've overcome or a hard-won achievement and validates your determination.
And behind it lies the key: genuineness. The Dove campaign comes to mind- complimenting women for their strength, not complimenting their shape.
- Take the time to learn the lingo, and add some of your own to the mix! Ever had somebody try to sell you a service for your company when they hadn't a clue how you do what you do? Lingo: say what they mean, the way they say it! At Wild West, we've made it our business understand lingo, the language of our client's clients, whether we're proofing a training manual or transcribing a megachurch sermon series.
Try adding some of your own lingo to broaden the language of your clients!
Flattery might get you somewhere, but not necessarily to the sale or solution!
If you'd like to talk about your writing your way to your client's challenges, call us at 440.361.0397 and we'll talk solutions!