Friday, February 10, 2012

You Have to Meet People Where They Are

Sure, you're on the up-and-up.  You know what you're talking about.  You have a great solution.  You have the facts to prove it.

But customers are suspicious.

So, if you hope to convince them, you have to adjust for mistrust.

What's the first rule of adjusting?

DO NOT contradict customers' version of reality.

Instead, study the language they use to portray things and situations. 

Get a good sense of the "scene" they've painted in their heads.

Because, for better or worse, that scene is the world they inhabit. It's the only one they know.

Once you've mastered that scene, revise your message so it conforms faithfully.

And when you next speak, at all costs resist the temptation to challenge your customers' worldview.

Customers will dignify your effort to communicate with a moment of their attention only if your message meshes with their preconceived notions of who's sincere, honest and caring.

Wellness guru Roniece Weaver said it best: "You have to meet people where they are."
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