Fake FamiliarityDon’t you hate it when people pretend to know all about you, even if they’ve never met you?
Duct Tape Marketing defines marketing as “getting people with a need to know like and trust you.” If prospects are going to trust you, you’ve got to level with them. You don’t have super-powers, and until they tell you who they are and what they need, you simply don’t know.
Businesses do it all the time. It’s a shortcut, a way to quickly create a sense of familiarity with their audiences. How many times have you heard a radio commercial that claims a product or service is perfect for people “just like you.” And then there’s the telemarketer who says, “I know you’re busy.” Really?
No matter what medium you’re using to talk to prospects, and whether you’re speaking to an audience (in a commercial or newsletter) or to an individual (by phone or in person), don’t presume to know that which you don’t. It comes across as presumptuous and phony.
Sometimes, it’s downright creepy. After all, how did you find out I cover my mouth when I sneeze or that I always make my credit card payments on time?
Okay, so it’s not meant to be taken literally. But if you’re making sweeping generalizations in order to create a false sense of familiarity, then nothing you say from that point on has any credibility.
In an age of social media, people expect authenticity, not rhetoric. You can create a more genuine connection with your prospects by saying “perhaps you’re one of those people who ______” or “if you’re dealing with _____, listen closely.”
Throughout the month of February, I’ll be focusing on authenticity as an essential component of marketing and sales. I welcome your comments.
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