The most valuable secrets are hidden in plain sight

In 1931 Charlie Chaplin released a silent movie called City Lights, which nearly everyone in the film world agrees is one of the greatest films ever made. The plot is simple. The Tramp, through crazy coincidences and deception, steals the money to cure the blindness of a girl he likes, and manages to physically hand it to her. This lands him in prison. When he gets out, now penniless, he discovers her working in her own flower shop, her sight fully restored. Of course, she doesn’t recognize him. What follows has been characterized by critic James Agee as “the greatest single piece of acting ever committed to celluloid”. Not only that, but we can use it to pull back the curtain on a beautiful marketing secret. Underneath the emotional finale is a business principle so powerful that we miss it simply because it’s part of the air we breathe. It shows up everywhere in the universe and controls everything we do. “But I’m Not Trying to Win an Academy Award!” Maybe you’re just trying to sell consulting services. And if that’s what you want to try doing with your marketing, be my guest. However, I think a stronger, higher idea is to give people hope and courage and inspire trust in your solutions. Yes, you can win hearts and minds. Like Mr. Chaplin. Because that is the highest and best use of “getting the word out”. And as a side-benefit, it makes selling automatic. It also tends to remove all the trickiness and do-hickory of 98% of online marketing. It silently draws your future client to you rather than forcing you to grab their lapels and scream at them about why you’re so awesome, an energy signature that repels. Let’s suppose the Tramp had jumped up and down in front of the Flower Girl’s shop, shouting about having given her the money? Reminding her of what her miserable life used to be like, agitating her pain, piling on the bonuses of how great it would be to be with him, issuing a 30-day guarantee (pre-nup). How would that have made her feel? And suppose he succeeded? Sure. This strategy can work if you have an infinite supply of energy and don’t particularly care who gets hurt along the way. But what sort of relationship would have come out of that? Instead, the Flower Girl is drawn quietly back to him because he is not asking anything of her. And the two create a powerful bond that infinitely enriches both of them.

The Counter-Intuitive Secret of Marketing Authority

Attraction is simply a different kind of energy than that which 99% of sellers radiate. And people feel that. It makes them feel very differently about you. It’s the kind of feeling that gets your emails opened, attracts responses to your work and of course, clients whose lives you were put here to change. This 87-year-old movie demonstrates how attraction has worked for the last century. And it will continue to work, as long as human beings care enough to see that in themselves. OK. So attraction works in the movies. But what does it look like in marketing? People have a really tough time seeing what attraction would look in their marketing. They have a hard time parsing it from hard-core persuasion. So they have questions. Would they still get as many clients as before? Will they get the right kind of clients? They wonder “Don’t people want to be sold anyway?” “What if I don’t follow up (42 times) just to “see how things are going?”” The real question is how much fun is it to chase clients? And if you catch them, does that relationship become anything other than transactional? The most miserable people I know are those who make money but hate their clients, and their lives are too often in meltdown mode. The reason questions come up at all is that attraction by it’s very nature doesn’t shout. If it did it wouldn’t be attraction. And just knowing that can bring on a boat-load of anxiety. If you haven’t seriously tried it before it might seem too difficult, uncertain, unstable, not results-oriented, just plain too mystical and way too out of your direct control. After all, if you don’t shout, how will you be heard in this crazy, noisy web-based Mardi Gras of a marketplace? But it just looks that way from the outside looking in. So let’s look at it from the inside out…in a business context, of course. Attraction happens when someone wants something you have, and that comes with a very specific energy signature. It’s the energy created by opposite polarities coming into close proximity. Positive attracts negative and vice versa. And of course positive repels positive and negative repels negative. This is one of the most reliable laws in nature. Well, you would never bet against it, would you? And yet, we routinely act as if this principle doesn’t exist by nearly everything we do, at least when it comes to sales. We know someone is skeptical because they are pushing back (positive polarity) so we come at them with “objection handling” (more positive polarity). What does this do except push them away? That’s what it looks like from the inside. We’ve all been there. It feels terrible, like ants crawling all over your skin. That’s the energy signature of repulsion. A Better Way to Sell But what if there was a way of selling that kept you in attraction mode from first contact to 100th re-order? One that made face-to-face selling functionally obsolete because an automated path of attraction brings you enough clients ready to go to work without any arm-twisting? There is. Coming January 2, 2019…the tools to breathe life into attraction-based marketing in your world. Much more to come. Stay tuned…

    6 replies to "What Can an 87 Year Old Silent Movie Teach Us About Chasing Clients?"

    • Drew Martin

      Can’t Wait. I was listening to a Podcast last week and the person said ” Manipulation is what I do to you, Persuasion is what I do for you”.

    • Steven Washer

      Ow! And that’s a strangely accurate expression of that painful belief. Thank you for the share, Drew.

    • Leslie Covington

      Thank you for sharing this. I look forward to hearing about the tools on January 2.

    • Susie Verde Verde

      Very cool- looking forward to hearing more on this topic!!

    • Miles Austin

      anxiously awaiting January 2nd!

    • Steven Speliotis

      this is the topic most of us in business deal with everyday…
      thank you for bringing the topic up for discussion.

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