By Catherine Franz
Just last week I was speaking to a group of 50 women and men. I opened by holding up a $20 and asking who would like this $20 bill. I also mentioned there were no strings attached. You would have thought that everyone would be raising their hand wanting the $20 bill.
That isn”t what happened. Less than half the people raised their hand.
I gave the $20 bill away and stood in silence. It wasn”t a long silence but silence when everyone expects to be hearing you talk is long whether its 10 seconds of several minutes. I was waiting until I saw a few audience members began fidgeting.
Then one women spoke up. Darn, I could have used that $20 for gas today. You guessed it, she was one of the hesitant ones.
My topic was on marketing. The exercise demonstrated that even when we market from the truth with no strings attached and even though we totally think of the customer first, many people perceive, assume, that there is going to be a catch to the offer.
This is a powerful lesson when you are expressing your offer, whether its written or verbal, the majority of the people reading or hearing it are going to be thinking with an it”s too good to be true mentality.
This means that whenever you are preparing any type of marketing material you need to see your offer from this perspective.
The following day I again spoke to another group. This time the audience was all women. I opened again with another $20. Only this time when I mentioned that there were no strings attached, I said it more powerfully – meaning more vocal variety – repeated it as if it was written in bold print and stated there were absolutely no strings attached. The word absolutely was set off with a mild hand slap.
Every hand raised.
The lessons learned
Whenever you make an offer you absolutely have to make sure you tell whomever you want to buy into whatever your offer is conveying what”s involved on their part. I”m talking about what will they loose out on if they pass on this opportunity. It could be a tank of gas or even lunch with a friend. It doesn”t always need to be something big and bold.
Another lesson learned was that in the first audience, the majority of the people raising their hands were women. This demonstrated that women are more likely to jump on an offer than a man. This also says to me that women are more willing to take a gamble than a man. Hmmm, that”s fuel for thought the next time you make an offer, isn”t it?
What else does this exercise tell you? How would you present your offers differently? Here”s your assignment. Think on this for a few moments and look at one of your offers and then ask the questions that keep your audience”s hands down and make sure you are addressing each one of them.
Catherine Franz. .