Marketing Lessons You’ll Want To Ignore

For those of us in Copywriting or Marketing there’s an irresistible urge to share our two cents about the lessons from the 2016 presidential election. Everywhere I turn, there’s someone eager to reveal the cause behind Trump’s win. Consider these examples:

       7 Marketing Lessons Gleaned From Donald Trumps Win

       Why Trump Won

       Donald Trump’s Persuasion Secrets

       How Trump Controlled The Masses

I hereby decline to do one of those obligatory posts about the election. Why? Because the conclusions prove unreliable, my own included. Sure, I have my guesses as to why Trump won. A quick gander at the highlights provides insight that might aid me in my own work. Any insight, however, can be boiled down to guesswork.

Let’s Play Connect-The-Dots

As humans we have a tendency to play connect-the-dots. For example, Google did these three things and became worth 500 billion. So, if I start a company and do those three things, I’ll be worth at least 100 million. It’s a nice, neat story we tell ourselves.  Ironically, the lack of information make it sound all the more reasonable. Adding in more information that doesn’t quite fit can spoil that neat story in our minds.

The same goes for the election. Trump did these three things better than Hillary and won the election. We get a nice, neat present wrapped up in a bow. As in the Google example, the reasoning always makes sense. After all, there’s no way to disprove it.

In an earlier article I wrote about how creating connect-the-dots logic makes it easy for your prospect to come to a desired conclusion. Like any useful tool, there’s a downside. The nearly infinite number of variables that produce an outcome, clouds the analysis.

Filtering Out 99.9% Of The Data

With the presidential election we had the uniqueness of the candidates, Russian involvement, Hillary’s emails, the Congress makeup, fake news, overall economic picture, globalization, automation, the primary process, other primary candidates, money, celebrity status of Trump, Clinton being a woman, the social views of the population at this moment in history, weather and how it affects voter turnout, third party candidates, behind the scenes power plays we are not privy to and an infinite number of other considerations.

All of those variables had some impact on the ultimate voting results. Would you trust analysis that ignores 99.9% of the variables and uses the remaining one or two to draw a definite conclusion?

I will go out on a limb and guarantee that the 2020 election will encompass its own unique variables that all play a part in determining the outcome.

Should We Ignore The Lessons

It’s our nature (and a bit of fun) to boil down who won to a few sound bites. Donald Trump won because he did A, B and C. If a few thousand votes had switched to Clinton’s favor in Michigan, Minnesota and Pennsylvania we’d get the opposite analysis. And those reasons would make just as much sense as the reasons Trump won.

I’m not saying we shouldn’t learn from history. We can look at the past election and determine which strategies seemed to help each candidate and which strategies hurt each candidate. Politics can be tricky. People often ignore the candidate and vote the party (yet another variable to consider).

Enjoy the debate and the lessons learned about why Trump won and Clinton lost. Just don’t change your strategies because of the findings.

Side Note: I wrote this article around 8AM. I edited it around 4PM. Just before my editing session a new podcast popped into my feed. It read: How Facebook Determined The Election

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How To Write Something Obnoxious… And Get Away With It

Can you really get away with saying anything you want to a prospect, even if it’s insulting? Let’s pretend for a minute that I called you a jerk. Would you feel insulted? Would tell me I’m obnoxious? Of course you would.

But…you can get away with it. There’s a way, actually two of them.

Before you attack your keyboard, ready to insult the world keep this in mind. You can use each one only once in a communication. That means you have two opportunities to use this piece of magic in every communication (either face to face, written, video or audio).

Stack The Deck In Your Favor

I suggest you use it only when necessary. Think of it as an ace up your sleeve. Pull out it only when you need it and only when it will add value to your persuasion or influence.

Unlike keeping an extra card up your sleeve in a poker game, you face no risk in pulling this card. It’s not cheating and you can’t get caught. Even if your prospect notices they are unlikely to take offense.

I first learned of this technique in 2004, under the tutelage of my sales mentor. I used it shortly after to score an interview for a high paying job (which I eventually got).

Imagine saying this to your prospect: If you’re a stupid businessman who doesn’t know the first thing about the investment business then you’re unlikely to find value in this.

Ouch! Pretty harsh, right? It comes across even harsher, especially in written communication where body language and tonality can’t be modulated.

The Two Magic Words

Let’s change it up a bit by adding a few words:

Let’s pretend for a minute that you’re a crappy businessman who doesn’t know the first thing about the investment business…

Two powerful words to add to your arsenal, Let’s pretend.  This two word phrase allows you to get away with saying things that would otherwise get in you in hot water.  

Let’s fix the example a bit further.  

Let’s pretend for a minute that you were a crappy businessman who doesn’t know the first thing about the investment business. Putting yourself in that mindset, where would you expect to find value in this?

In verbal, face to face communication I don’t need to be so careful in the way I phrase things because I can stress the word pretend when I speak to a prospect or audience. In written communication we need to be more careful. That’s why I added putting yourself in that mindset. I’m again reminding him that we’re just pretending and I’m not really talking about him. I then ended with a question instead of a statement which is good practice in any form of communication.

A close cousin of Let’s Pretend is Let’s Suppose. Not as powerful but still works in less aggressive maneuvers. In the above example I wouldn’t dare use suppose. It’s just not strong enough to offset the aggressive nature of the remaining phrase. I tend to use it more when referring to myself.

Let’s suppose I was foolish enough to ….

Let’s suppose I offered this for a lower price …

But… A Warning

I’ve seen examples of using the word Imagine for the same purpose. Imagine works well for putting your prospect into an ideal or pleasurable scenario but remember this:

When I tell you imagine, I am giving you a command. When we imagine we like to imagine the ideal, the pleasurable. You may be able to get away with it in face to face communication with the help of body language and tonality. When your words convey your entire message you cannot risk the unpredictable nature of interpretation.

Pretend is a world of make believe. In a world of make believe we can say anything. Just remember the golden rule.


Use it just once per communication and use it wisely.

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Thomas Jefferson’s 240 Year Old Persuasion Insight

Does it ever frustrate you when a prospect won’t take action even when you’re sure it will solve her problem? I find it frustrating that it still surprises marketers, business owners and salespeople when this happens. It’s old news. In fact, two-hundred-forty years ago, Thomas Jefferson wrote about this very concept. Long before we had armies of psychologists and academics study the problem, his simple observation of history and life provides us keen insight.

In the Declaration of Independence he writes:

“…all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed…”

In modern words, we suffer with our problems or challenges as long as they are tolerable rather than make uncomfortable changes that might benefit us.

He goes on to write (and I’m paraphrasing here) that when injustice grows beyond the tolerable point, it is the right of the people to enact change.

Why We Prefer To Deal With Pain

We’re willing to suffer problems, challenges and even pain as long as we perceive it less painful than making a change. At some point that pain might pass a threshold where we feel compelled to take action.

You see, humans haven’t changed much since 1776. We still suffer through tolerable pain. We conserve our energy until the pain, anger, discomfort becomes intolerable.

Many of our prospects are in the tolerable pain continuum. They know they have a problem. It pains them. They may even know they should do something about it. Predictably, they don’t take action because they believe the pain of taking action and changing exceeds the pain they currently feel.

As you design your sales and marketing solutions, ponder this question:

How do I present my solution in a way that my prospect perceives it less painful than the pain he currently feels?

Of course, each prospect has his or her own threshold of pain. One of the things we like to do in Copywriting is show our prospects that their problem causes them more pain than they may actually recognize. For example, let’s pretend you market a “quit smoking” product. Your market lacks the awareness that smoking kills. Silly, I know. It’s just an example. Educate your market about all the evils of smoking and then they start thinking “oh my god. I better do something about this before it kills me.”

The Sales Prediction Formula

If I had to boil this down to a simple formula it would be this:

If the pain of taking action < pain enduring their problem or pain = Likely Sale

The pain of taking action includes:

  • Cost of change (financial)
  • Cost of change (emotional)
  • What they will have to give up (loss aversion)
  • How they will explain it to family, friends and coworkers
  • Fear of the unknown/What if it doesn’t work?

I’ve addressed some of these in other articles but most are self-explanatory. As you go through your marketing and address these gaps, be sure to give a nod to Thomas Jefferson. His wisdom from long ago still holds true today.

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Why Politico’s Fail To Persuade

Why does it seem like political operatives, with their impressive command of policy zingers, fail to persuade their opponents. In fact, they often drive a deeper wedge between their side and those they try to influence.

My cluttered news feeds on social media feature tweets, posts and whatever about the CIA report linking Russia to election tampering. I didn’t read the report. I’ve only seen the soundbites. I’m guessing that’s the same for about 99% of the public.

As expected, left leaning pundits responded with comments like “See, we finally have proof. Do you bobbleheads finally get it?”

Right leaning pundits respond by bashing the organization who delivered the report.

The messages from both sides appeal to their followers but only further drive a wedge between them and the other side. That’s obvious to anyone who follows politics. Most of the commenters respond from a place of emotion, particularly anger. They’re looking to catch the other side in a contradiction, seeking to land that left uppercut to knock them into their senses.

I’ve never seen this work in marketing. My hunch tells me it doesn’t work in politics either. Proof matters but only when it’s delivered in a context agreeable to the side you are trying to persuade or influence. It must be delivered in way that allows them to come to your desired conclusion on their own. The minute you try and force it you’ve lost.

The Popular Strategy That Never Works

The “smother them in proof” approach does not surprise me. What does surprise me is that some of it comes from people who should know better. For example, David Axelrod tweeted: “Russia’s brazen raid on U.S. campaign was stunning. @realDonaldTrump team’s blithe dismissal only deepens concern.”

You see, he’s throwing proof at the right and criticizing their leader. Maybe he’s trying to influence the right so that they share his concern about Russia. If that’s his goal he failed. What would have worked better?

There’s a few directions you could go. Most important, refrain from attacking your opposition directly or indirectly and re-frame it from their worldview.

An Alternate Way To Persuade

For example: “Russian interference did not win the election but it’s a black eye on our electoral process… and they’ll get better at it next time. How will we respond?”

That’s just an example off the top of my head. I don’t know if that would have worked better, but it would have a better chance of succeeding. A tweet like my revised example won’t rile up your followers but it has a better chance of appealing to your opposition than brazen attacks or even subtle jabs.

Because we’re emotional, predictable creatures, the oppositions responses follow the same narrative. Most of the responses exploit confirmation bias and assimilation bias. They refute the accusation to reclaim their sense of certainty. Here’s a few examples I grabbed.

“The left throwing baseless accusations to make excuses for HRC’s loss”
“This is the same organization that claimed WMD in Iraq”

 The successful influencer puts his or her own feelings aside. They ask themselves: How can I convince my opponent to come to my desired conclusion on their own. How do I do it without ever asserting what they should believe or criticizing their existing belief.

Like I wrote in an earlier article, the key to influence and persuasion lies in attacking your campaign from the perspective of an observer, not a participant. You can read that article here.

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A Persuasion Technique For People Who Hate Selling

I’m probably the least handy person I know. I outsource just about all my home maintenance to professionals. Every so often, I get an idea in my head that I’m capable of doing a job myself. Whenever I make an attempt, the results are so bad I vow never to try again.

A broken soap dish in my kids bathroom got me thinking it was time to try again. The contractor was going to charge around $300. That sounded a bit high so I thought I would do it myself. When I explained it to the contractor he said he understood.

His Treasured Secrets Revealed

Surprised at his response, I couldn’t think of what to say so I thanked him for his understanding. He then offered me a tip, several of them. He explained how to carefully remove the rest of the soap dish and then chip away the tile underneath. Then he explained the nuances of removing individual tiles without disturbing other ones. Finally, he shared his secret of how to get the grout to match the existing work. He spent about fifteen minutes teaching me the finer details of tile work.

He gave me all his secrets free of charge. When he was done teaching I asked him when he could come by and do the job. Once I had an understanding of the skill and work involved in doing the job I knew I would fail If I tried to perform it myself.

His free teaching convinced me that paying him to do it for me was the right choice. When he came by he spent a little over three hours doing the job. It looks perfect. You would never know there was a repair. Thank god I spent that $300.

The Truth About Giving It Away

So many business people fear giving away their secrets. I freely give away mine. Why? I know it takes a ton of hard work, practice and testing to perfect these techniques. I also know that 95% of the people who are given these techniques won’t do anything with them.

They’ll realize how much effort it takes to master it themselves and say:

“Forget it, can you do it for me?”

Hiding your secrets means your audience conjures their own interpretations. They’ll guess the skill level required to do what you do. Remember, they only see the finished product not the work that went into it. I don’t know a better way of getting your prospects to say “screw it, just do it for me” than by revealing your secrets.

Here’s another tip. Don’t blab about how difficult of mastering your skills. Either they’ll get it right away or they’ll try it themselves and come to the same conclusion. Remember, one of our golden rules.

Your prospects may believe what you tell them. They may refuse to believe what you tell them (no matter how much proof you provide)… But… they will never doubt what they conclude on their own.

It goes against our better judgment to share our wealth of knowledge for free but if it convinces your prospect to say “screw it… just do it for me”…

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How To Bulletize Your Persuasion Skills In 30 Minutes A Day

There’s one practice that’s improved my Copywriting and persuasive writing chops more than anything other. This one skill gives you the ability to sell just about anything through your writing. It’s not headlines, hooks or clickbait techniques.

That skill is writing bullets. I’m not talking about the cheesy bullets you seen in “corporate” communications or technical documentation. I’m talking about sales bullets. I spend thirty minutes every morning writing sales bullets. I talk about this practice in my book Addictive Productivity so I won’t dwell on it here.

Great sales bullets tease, entice and spark insatiable desire. They cram raw power into as few words as possible.

They give the reader the benefit but hold back the mechanism that makes it work. For example,

  • How to eliminate dark circles under your eyes without creams, surgery or homeopathic nonsense
  • What 77% of married women wish their man knew about foreplay (but are embarrassed to bring up)
  • 89% couples who earn more than $143,652 ignore this $5,842 tax saving. (Even your tax software hides this loophole)

The Secret Behind Powerful Bullets

Notice how in those three bullets I revealed the benefit of each fact, not the mechanism behind the benefit. That is the power of a bullet. You create a sensation of curiosity and desire. If I had revealed the mechanism behind the benefit there would be no curiosity or desire and no reason to buy what you are selling.

I bring this up because I’ve been slaving over a bullet writing project the last few days. I have to admit I’ve even struggled on parts of it. Struggled. Even with two years of practice under my belt I still face challenges. That’s what I love about the bullet writing process. Each new project presents new challenges, new opportunities to sharpen your skill.

A great bullet can make a sale. A great bullet sometimes exceeds the power of the underlying mechanism. Take a look at the first bullet I posted above:

How to eliminate dark circles under your eyes without creams, surgery or homeopathic nonsense

What if I told you that the mechanism behind the dark circle elimination was getting eight hours of sleep? It would be a letdown, right? That’s the raw power of a bullet.

I once bought product in the neighborhood of $1,000 based on a single bullet. That’s how powerful these can be.

There’s a process for writing bullets and I don’t have the time or space to delve into that here. Don’t worry. I won’t leave you hanging too long.

In a few weeks I’ll be putting together a free guide on how to write bullets. If you’d like access, hop on over to my website and sign up so that you can be notified when it’s released.

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Solving Persuasion Dilemma’s

Need a challenge to sharpen your written persuasion skills? Overcoming a dilemma your prospect faces provides a unique opportunity to put your brain in overdrive. Before we get into strategies to do that, let’s define the term.

Dilemma – a situation where a choice needs to be made between two alternatives where all options are equally undesirable.

Here’s an example I faced and a solution that allowed me to remain in a positive light with the client:

Reviewing a piece of copy, I found one problem after another. There were several examples of telling the reader what to believe, criticizing alternative beliefs, talking down to the reader and a few other doozy’s I won’t get into.

Here’s the thing. When he gave me this copy, he said it was the best work he’s ever done. He asked me to give it a once-over in case there were any glaring omissions.

Here’s The Dilemma

Unfortunately, the only honorable recommendation would be to scrap it and rewrite the whole thing. I had a dilemma. I could tell the truth and hurt his feelings or sugar coat it and let him do something destructive to his business. If I told him the truth, he’d probably lash out and ignore my advice and maybe even avoid my help in the future. If I sugar coated it he would suffer the same results and still blame me for not pointing out his errors.

Both outcomes were equally unacceptable. So here’s what you do when you’re faced with this kind of dilemma.  You can frame the outcome you want as more palatable than the alternative and re-assign the blame away from the person to whom you are communicating.

That doesn’t make a lot of sense so let me reveal how I handled this situation. This snippet should make it clear.

“Hi Brian. You’re right. This may be your best work. Here’s some bad news though. The best writing doesn’t always win. I’m pretty familiar with this market and in my experience they don’t respond to honesty. Crazy, I know. Past results have shown that they are more responsive in a less direct method of communication. Here are some examples of where I would revise your copy…”

Here’s Why I Lied

In the snippet above I told a white lie. I know it wasn’t his best work. I qualified it by writing it may be his best work, but let’s be real. It was a lie. Then, I told him it wouldn’t work by assigning the blame to his market. I said it wouldn’t work because they don’t respond to that level of honesty, which was true. Then I explained the reasons behind my evaluation. He would not be privy to the past test results. I’m giving him new information he never had access to before. This provides him mental cover to accept my reasoning.

Faced with two equally displeasing alternatives these strategies open up new paths. It dispels the old adage of no win situations. There is always a way out.

Note: Names and circumstances were changed and tweaked.

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Upton Sinclair’s Anti-Persuasion Rule

Read this famous quote from Upton Sinclair

“It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it.”

If I owned a coal mine, it would be almost impossible to persuade me that coal poses a danger to the environment. If I agreed with that notion and continued to operate the coal mine, I would feel mental discomfort. How could live with myself if I’m destroying the environment? If I agreed with it and decided to close the coal mine, it would mean my business is over. Neither alternative suits me. Armed with my multitude of human biases, I find a way to explain away or refute the evidence that coal is bad for the environment. Or, I may justify it in that the benefits far exceed the overstated problems.

Sinclair Was Wrong

With much respect to Sinclair, his famous quote needs shows its age. It needs a slight modification.  It’s not just our salaries that we protect it’s our beliefs and our worldview.

Let’s suppose my worldview tells me that big corporations are evil.  A big corporation that gives a million dollars to charity won’t be interpreted as evidence to the contrary. It interpret it as an attempt to hide their nefarious actions with money.

Now, let’s pretend I have a worldview that liberals are money-sucking takers. If I see a liberal paying a high minimum wage so their employees don’t have to get food stamps, it won’t change my views. I will interpret it as a socialist who wants to take from the ones who add value and give to those who produce less value.

What About Proof?

We have this belief that if I can just show them this proof or catch them in a contradiction, they’ll see the error of their ways and come over to the our side. If you’ve ever been frustrated at a friend for their inability to see the truth, then you know what I’m talking about.

The problem is we just don’t give up our beliefs or worldview that easily. More important, nobody will ever convince us to change our worldviews. We have to come to that conclusion on our own.

There are strategies that can lead someone down the path but ultimately it will be their decision process that gets them there.

In sales and marketing, it’s rarely worth the effort and fortunately it’s not necessary. Often, you can sidestep the issue altogether. Focus on an area where your worldviews intersect and build around that. In other cases it might make more sense to re-frame your message so that it’s congruent with their worldview. Sometimes the best way to persuade is to avoid doing it at all.

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No Pressure Persuasion

Birthday celebrations. Do you like them? Maybe you only like other peoples birthdays? Do you hate them all? I seem to go back and forth. I used to think: “what are we really celebrating, making it through another year without dying?” 

Somewhere in my mid 30’s my belief transitioned. Now it’s: “why not, we should celebrate life more often.”

We’re celebrating my wife’s birthday today. It’s not a biggie like 30, 40 or 50, so we don’t have anything elaborate planned. Still, I want to do something nice for her. One thing I don’t do anymore is ask what she wants for her birthday. Nor do I ask her to think about what she wants for her birthday. Asking her to think about it is akin to giving her homework. Giving her homework means she’ll feel (at least some) pressure to come up with a good answer.

The idea of asking someone what they want and creating homework and pressure is something I’ve been thinking about more often lately, especially being on the receiving end of a lot of sales calls. Nobody enjoys feeling pressure even though, in these situations, it’s done with good intention.

Yesterday I received an email from some vendor asking me three things in my business I need help with. This vendor had good intentions but now he’s making me think and if I agree to his request, I’m under pressure to come up with answers. I haven’t responded to him yet. I probably won’t at all. If he follows up with me again I’ll ask him to change his approach in a way that avoids giving me homework or putting added pressure on me.

In written communication it’s too easy to blow off requests like how can I help you with your business, what are the three biggest pain points or tell me about the three biggest challenges you’re facing. You’re giving your prospect homework and creating pressure. To get rid of the pressure all they have to do is ignore you. In face to face communication they won’t just walk away but in written communication they will.

This goes back to one of our most basic rules in consumer psychology. People gravitate towards pleasure, move away from pain (pressure is pain) and conserve energy (homework requires energy).

Avoid Burdening Your Prospects With Homework And Pressure 

Instead of giving your prospect homework, you do the homework instead. Do your research ahead of time to find out as much as you can. You won’t find out the whole picture but if you get close you can then zero in without adding homework and pressure.

Instead of asking the question, how can I help you in your business, use an if/then sequence or question format. For example:

“If you are struggling with the design of your mobile website reply here and let me know. I’m doing a free webinar for 50 people on Dec 20 that will show you some immediate solutions with minimal or no investment.”

In this example, you are doing the homework for the prospect, reducing the amount of thinking they have to do (conserving energy) and eliminating the pressure of having to think of something. Of course, we can spruce up our message with better verbiage than I used here but you get the point. I’m showing the prospect that my expertise focuses on design of mobile websites. There’s little thinking required on his part. Either he struggles with this or he doesn’t. Either he knows it or he doesn’t. If he’s not aware that he struggles with it I’ll need to target him in some other way. I can ask if he faces any of the symptoms of bad design like poor feedback from users, complaints about the site crashing or shorter visits from mobile devices.

You won’t get everyone to respond but you’ll get a better response from a targeted, specific approach than the vague how can I help you with your business.

If that vendor follows up with me again, I will make this same suggestion and ask him to rephrase his question.

In keeping with my no homework, no pressure mantra, I didn’t ask my wife what she wanted for her birthday. I’m on my way to get her something I know she’ll like. I told her we’ll get a babysitter and go out and celebrate. I’ll pick the place. No homework. No pressure.

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Connect-The-Dots Persuasion

Every child learns to play connect-the-dots, usually by the age of two. It’s a game we mentally play in our heads as adults even though we give up the paper and crayon version by kindergarten.

As persuaders, we often assume that our audience or prospects are incapable or have forgotten how to play connect-the-dots. Consider the following ad I saw on Facebook

Headline: This Popular Diet May Cause A Sudden Heart Attack

This was “sponsored content” from a random news site. I like to check these out and see what people are doing to generate online business.

This is a typical fear based headline. Sometimes fear works and I’m guessing this was one of those times. The article then continues the thought from the headline, bombarding the reader with questionable proof of the dangers of this diet. As you delve further into the article you feel like you’re being bullied into believing the claims. Then at some point they ask for your email address, promising you a better solution, presumably to try and sell you something else. I didn’t bother going that far.

The problem is that the advertiser is trying to beat the reader into submission. They are asking me to accept their conclusions. They’re not letting me connect the dots and draw my own conclusion.

Here’s my revised connect-the-dots story:

This 38 year old mother of two had a close call with heart disease after three months on the [fad] diet. A routine physical showed evidence of an imminent heart attack. An alert doctor discovered the problem after a discussion with the woman about her diet. He ordered a blood test as a precaution. The results came back and he was stunned. The doctor called her and told her the results of the blood test. He then told her to check into an emergency room.”

The woman was treated and instructed by her doctor to follow the [healthy] diet. Within a month her blood levels of toxin “xyz” were undetectable.

It turns out the doctor read the study in Medical Journal Magazine that women who follow the fad diet have a 68% chance of developing this toxic condition and only the [healthy] diet can unwind the results quickly and safely.

Of course, this made up story would need some polishing if it were true, but it’s an example of letting the reader connect the dots so she says to herself:

Hmmm, I’m on the fad diet. I wonder if I have this toxin.”

Let’s Rethink Show Don’t Tell

You’re probably familiar with the old saying show don’t tell. I don’t think that quite fits what we’re trying to do here. Then, create your connect-the-dots picture and let your reader draw the lines so he says, “ah, I see what’s going on. Now I get it”

When you’re passionate about a topic, it’s a struggle to hold back your desire to command. I often guilty of this rule myself in early drafts. That’s why I keep the connect-the-dot rule  in my post writing checklist.

Here’s the thing:

If you have a lot of credibility with your prospect you may be able to get away with telling them what to believe instead of letting them connect-the-dots. Wouldn’t it be more powerful if they came to the same conclusion on their own? Wouldn’t it be more powerful to walk away from your letter feeling like they’ve been enlightened instead of convinced? This emphasizes of one of my primary persuasion rules:

“Your prospect may believe your claims and assertions but will NEVER doubt their own conclusions”

The mechanics of connect-the-dots moments take some work to execute. Here is an ultra-simple example to show you how it works:

Example 1 – Apple Computer became the biggest company in the world through their creative genius

Example 2 – Apple Computer hired the best designers, the most innovative coders and promoted an “out of the box” decision making process. They became the most valuable company in the world.

Yeah, that’s overly simplistic but it illustrates the example. Go to it!

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