What Marketing is All About

“You’ve gotta come and see this!” my wife exclaimed as she ran into my office (which is any room with no kids in it at the time) last night.

What is it?” I was curious what had made her so excited in the middle of the night.

Just watch,” she said, unpausing the DVR. She played the commercial for the 2014 Honda Odyssey.

Normally she doesn’t get excited about commercials, but this one had her head spinning. “Honey, I need that van!” kept rolling off her lips for the rest of the night.

Honda is really onto something here.

What Makes This a Great Commercial?

There’s nothing particularly brilliant about the special effects. It’s not thigh-slappingly funny. But it got the only thing that truly matters right.

It showcases the built-in vacuum.

The commercial is brilliant because it highlights a brilliant move Honda made when they designed this car.

honda-odyssey-2014-built-in-vacuumimage via theshoppingmama.com

Maybe they hired a mind reader, or maybe they just asked van drivers what they wanted in a new van. However they came up with the idea, they’re now offering something that moms and dads (the ideal customers for vehicles like this) have been wishing they’d had for years.

That’s what marketing is all about folks. Finding out what people want and helping them get their hands on it.

Honda’s the first car manufacturer to offer this innovation (if I can call it that), but they won’t be alone for long. Their unique selling proposition won’t be unique for long.

What do they need to do to keep the advantage?

P.S. Are you having trouble crafting your own rock-solid USP? You should consider this.


Cialdini Agrees with My Persuasion Theory

Conversion is always an internal change. To borrow the words of Jeff Sexton, “all persuasion is self-persuasion.”

You use your words to paint vivid, evocative images in the minds of your prospects…their response will correspond directly with their desires, motivations and priorities…

You base your marketing messages or sales pitch on the quest they’re on, the vision they have for their lives and the way they see their place in the world…

You do your best to be convincing…but those who become your customers are those who convince themselves that you can deliver the results they want.”

Other than Jeff Sexton, I haven’t heard any other expert say that persuasion is always ultimately self-persuasion. But I tell you, it’s the truth.

And whether he knows it or not, Robert Cialdini agrees with this assertion. If you analyze the 6 principles from his book Influence, you’ll see what I mean. Check it out.

Reciprocity – When someone does something for you or gives you something, you feel indebted to them. You want to pay them back, because you don’t like to feel like you own anyone anything. Reciprocity is the desire to rid yourself of that feeling.

No one makes you feel the need to reciprocate, but when they take the first step by giving you something, they start the process.

The outcome is pretty predictable.

Consistency – We all want to stay true to the statements we make. We have an inner desire to maintain consistency to things we say or write. We convince ourselves that it’s important to do what we say we’ll do. We have an even bigger problem deviating from what we proclaim ourselves to be. If I say I’m an art collector, I better start acquiring some nice pieces!

Our desire to be consistent with the positive things other people think about us (or what we want them to think about us) can be even more compelling.

Social Proof – Everyone wants to be seen as an individual. But at the same time, we have a deep-seated desire fit in somewhere. There’s safety in numbers, right?

A lot of times, we really want to do something and all we need to gain the confidence to pull the trigger is the knowledge that other people (just like us) have done the same thing safely and with satisfactory results.

Liking – I like you. It gives me pleasure to buy from you. I enjoy the feeling of supporting you or your cause, feeling like I’m helping you succeed, etc.

So, naturally, I can persuade myself that doing business with you is a good idea. Even if I don’t really need what you’re selling. Or, if I have to choose between two vendors, I’ll often pick the person I like better instead of the cheaper choice or even the one with higher quality.

How many times have you done that?

Authority – We’re designed to trust people in positions of authority. It starts when we’re kids obeying our parents and believing everything they tell us. Even as we get older and gain autonomy, we never fully get rid of this disposition.

We protect ourselves from making bad choices by defer to people who know better than we do. Self-preservation is a powerful desire.

Scarcity – Missing out on something you could have had is a horrible feeling. We don’t want to feel that. We’ll jump through all kinds of hoops to avoid that feeling. That’s why scarcity or urgency works in marketing.

Sometimes we make a choice more to protect ourselves from this feeling of missing out on an opportunity than from the desire for the object itself.

The evidence is plain. Persuasion is always, at its root, self-persuasion. And although he’s never said it, Robert Cialdini agrees with me (and Jeff Sexton, of course).


Why You’re Not Making Any Money Online

Ryan Healy listed 12 reasons why most people don’t make any money in their internet “businesses.”

If you’re experiencing difficulty getting money flowing online, this will help. You might see yourself here.

Check out 12 Reasons You Can’t Make Your First $50 Online.


Quote of the Week 26

Have ever started a new project or activity full of excitement, only to find your enthusiasm shrinking over the coming days and weeks?

I think everyone who has lived a few years has probably had this experience. It’s a pretty common occurrence amongst us humans, record-setting track athlete Jim Ryun has some advice for us.

“Motivation gets you started; habit keeps you going.”

Achieving the things you really desire in life will usually take hard work. We don’t always feel inspired to keep at it, though.

Most people you and I know mess up at this point. When the emotional charge that accompanies the early stages of a new venture dies down, we give up. We lack the willpower to push through.

The old proverb that says anything worth having is worth working for is 100% true. If you want to reach your goals in life, you’ll have to put in real effort.

Jim Ryun knows quite a bit about hard work. He set world records, after all!

His recipe involves forming habits to keep moving forward after the motivation wears off.

Roman poet Ovid is quoted as saying “Nothing is stronger than habit.” Even motivation.

What’s all this boil down to? You have some challenging goals to accomplish, right? You know you’ve either already felt that initial excitement or you soon will. Begin immediately to form habits that will continue to propel you toward the finish line when the feelings cool down. Be purposeful about it.

You will find yourself to be more successful than you’ve been at any point in the past when you’ve allowed emotion (or the lack of them) to dictate your actions. And you’ll probably outperform most of your peers that are working on the same goals.

Sounds like a good plan to me.