Relevance, Real-evance, Relate-evence

Posted by on July 25, 2011

The Monday Morning Memo for July 25, 2011

Relevance has always been an important part of effective communication but never so much as today.

The appalling dropout rate in High Schools and the sharp decline in church attendance are just two of the indicators of an accelerated demand by people for relevance.

“Why should I? Will it make me happier? Is it really going to make a difference or is it just a waste of my time?” These are the unspoken questions asked all day, every day, by every customer. I believe these fierce, unspoken questions are society’s response to the jet-engine whine of information overload.

Are you answering these unspoken questions in your ads, or are you just adding to the overload?

“I am the customer. How will you change my condition? Convince me that interacting with you would be worth my time.”

Keep in mind, advertiser, that your ad will be just one of 5,000 sneaky little messages that will try to break into the customer’s consciousness today. Most of these 5,000 messages will be evaluated and dismissed in a fraction of a second. Will yours be one of these? Look around. The air is thick with messages.

They bark like little dogs and wave at us like shadows from the corners of our eyes.

Let’s talk for a moment about the two basic styles of selling:

A dynamic “Me” personality believes in “overcoming objections.” Selling is combat. Push.

A responsive “We” personality believes in “positive attraction.” Selling is seduction. Pull.

Most people talk about Push and Pull as different forms of media. “The Internet,” they say, “is a Pull media. Everything else is Push.”

But don’t you believe that for a second. “Push” and “Pull” don’t describe the media; they describe the relationship between advertiser and customer. Internet advertisers who use a Push message strategy quickly conclude they’re somehow “reaching the wrong people” and then go off to find a qualified opt-in list because, “By golly, if I can just reach the right people I know I can make me some money!”  It’s hard to convince an overbearing Push jackass that he needs to change his approach.

Let me say this plainly: Marshall McLuhan was wrong. The media is NOT the message. The message is the message.

What, I ask you, will be your message? The media is just the messenger who will deliver it. Do you actually believe it is the messenger who determines the customer’s response to your message?

Push or Pull can be used online.

Push or Pull can be used in traditional media.

Advertisers using a Pull strategy in traditional media are seeing this new style of advertising work extremely well.

Pull is built on relevance, positive attraction, connection, relationship and credibility. But you can’t create an ad that relates to your customer and seems credible to them until you first understand the wants, needs, hungers, fears and anxieties of your customer.

It’s not about you. It’s about them. How will your product or service change their condition? Tell them.

If I could teach you in 6 minutes how to create a Pull message, I’d happily do that for you in next week’s Monday Morning Memo. But I can’t teach it in 6 minutes.

I can, and I will, teach it in 2 long days.

Are you coming? If so, be sure to bring lots of examples of the recent ads you’ve been using. This class won’t be about me and my message.

It will be about you and yours.

Roy H. Williams

PS – “How to Move Your Ads from Push to Pull” will also be taught during the next several 1-hour sessions of Wizard of Ads Live, the wizard’s new streaming video class. The upcoming session will be next Monday, August 8, at 11AM Central Time. Want the details? If you are already enrolled, would you please send ahead examples of your current advertising for Roy to critique and advise? Real-world examples always work better than theoretical ones, don’t you think? Email me JPEGS of your print ads, scripts and audio of your radio ads and links to your video ads posted on Youtube. I’ll make sure the wizard gets them. – Sean Taylor,

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