Sick of hype and hard sell? Good news. The Marketing Gurus seem to be catching on. Famed copywriter Clayton Makepeace just wrote an article that confirms what I (and others) have been saying for years: “Everything you think you know about attracting new customers and writing to existing customers is quickly becoming obsolete.” For example:
- “One-shot customer acquisition promotions are going the way of the dinosaurs.
- “Bombastic ‘big promise’ or USP headlines don’t work as well.
- “High-octane sales copy is losing its power.”
Does this mean the outrageous promises, hard sell and hype are finally ending? We can only hope.
It’s good to hear a giant in old-time, hard-sell copywriting finally say what consumers already know. Today’s shoppers — of any age — are more savvy and more cynical than ever. They don’t fall for that old BS anymore. The credibility of media, marketers, corporations and small biz stands near zero when a prospect first catches your scent. That is especially true in email marketing and your website.
Bottom line: They don’t believe what you say. That’s why a good copywriter is so important. It’s up to the copy, the content, your message, to lift your credibility above zero. It’s all about what you say, and how you say it. That’s why, online or off, a good copywriter is worth his weight in gold.
There’s a better way.
Instead of promising the moon, take it slow. Let prospects get to know you first. You don’t propose on the first date, right? So don’t try to close the deal immediately either. In fact, don’t “sell” at all. Not at first. Instead, offer them your help — no strings attached. Give before you ask for anything in return.
Swallow hard and start giving away your secrets. Your best stuff. (Not all of it, of course.) Free information is only appreciated if it’s new and valuable, not more of the same old stuff they’ve heard a hundred times before. Offer them free samples of your product. A free trial period of your service.
Build a new marketing strategy around this concept: stop selling, start giving. Call it “Golden Rule” Marketing. When it’s well executed, it overcomes cynicism, reduces skepticism and raises credibility.
People don’t like to buy from strangers. Unless it’s some kind of emergency, they prefer to get to know, like and trust you first. Guess what? That’s actually better for you, too. Why?
Once you let prospects get familiar with you and your offerings, it is much easier to gently move them along to the next step (touchpoint) in the sales cycle. The more you share, they more they’ll care. That strengthens your relationship, and over the long term it’s much more likely to lead to a long-term relationship, enthusiastic referrals and a booming business.
Need help planning and executing your “Golden Rule” marketing plan? Let’s talk. Want to get to know me better first? Smart move! Sign up for my free newsletter (see form above), follow me on Twitter and/or let’s connect on LinkedIn.