In conversation with associates recently a long forgotten book came to mind. Our discussion involved how target customers accept information.

I’m told we hear 20,000 – 30,000 every day. We spend more than half our day listening. Yet we remember only 20% or so of what we hear.

All of us filter what we hear. We actually tune out much of what people say to us. We automatically reject what we do not believe. Whether or not what we believe is true we reject opposing views.

How we learn is complex. What we remember and why we remember it is also complex. As marketers it is our job to break through the voice of judgement (VOJ) telling a target customer to reject something different from what they believe.

Breaking through that VOJ involves ‘positioning’. ‘Positioning’ is our effort to have our offer viewed as having a clear, unique, and advantageous position in the consumer’s mind.

‘Positioning’ is successful when our product is thought of as superior to what the target customer may currently prefer.
That long forgotten book is ‘Positioning: The Battle For Your Mind. Written by Jack Trout and Al Ries 20 years ago and updated this year, This book lays out in easy to understand terms how to make it easier for your target to say yes.

Most selling is not effective. Most of the time we cannot sell anything. What we can do is describe the product in a manner causing the target to buy. The power is all with the target customer. What we do as marketers is make it easy for the customer to justify the purchase.

That’s why a qualified customer is one with a need, the ability to make a purchase decision, and the money to purchase the offer. Your selling premise is identifying that need and offering a believable solution. One the customer buys in to.

I mention ‘Positioning: The Battle For Your Mind because it was the first book to “deal with the problems of communicating to a skeptical, media-blitzed public.

‘Positioning: The Battle For Your Mind” came out in 1987, long before the Internet as we know the web today. Then advertising was print and broadcast. People have always had fixed ideas and prejudices. Positioning described how to create a “position” in a prospective customer’s mind that reflects a product’s own strengths and weaknesses as well as those of its competitors.

Most people accept messages supporting what they already believe. Facts are often ignored if they do not support a person’s belief of a topic. Your marketing task is to present your product or service in a manner that cuts through strongly held beliefs.

Suppose your product aids weight loss. Unless prospects believe your product fits with what they understand about weight loss you have little chance of selling to that person. Positioning teaches you how to build from a target’s beliefs and having him/her accept your sales pitch.

Here’s an example, a sad one, but accurate. Many people believe one can make money online with no work. These people buy promise after promise (secrets, magic sauce software, incredible systems) for making money on the Internet. They usually fail. They believe the next shiny thing will do the trick.

That group is not going to buy your rational road map to starting and managing a viable online business. They don’t believe you and know there is a way to make money online with no work . . . if only they could find it. They know the next flashy offer backed up by images of daily sales numbers and bank account balances is their salvation.

Isn’t that like treasure hunter mentality? Legends retold about pirate gold and sunken treasure keep people diving Caribbean depths, searching the ocean floor for Spanish doubloons and precious gems. At least treasure hunters actually work seeking their fortune. And some may actually find something of value.

So, how do we cut through that wall of judgement? I advise reading Positioning.  That book gives many examples you can apply to your selling experience. Here’s one tactic you can use today. Look at your niche and the products offered. No matter how crowded it may be you can grab a share of sales.

Say something about your product others in the niche do not say about theirs. Don’t make anything up. Stay with fact. The product making a claim first owns that claim, no matter how obvious that claim may be.

Here’s an example: virtually all hand and body soap kill surface skin bacteria. That’s a fact. Think about a hand/body soap product that first claims “kills up to 99% of all cold and flu bacteria”.

Or, if the industry leading hand/body soap has staked out the bacteria killing position then position your product against the leader. “My Soap kills more bacteria than the leading brand and leaves your skin softer to the touch”. Your product is better and offers something else: skin softer to the touch.

Softer than what?

Now, If I want to sell a software package helping make money online I chose to make the process easier. I want a piece of the target audience that knows making money on the Internet takes work. So, I sell the idea that my product makes making money online easier. Rather than farm out some piece of work or another I sell a plug-in for WordPress that does the job.

With a reasonably priced plug-in I get time-saving automation and don’t have to manage a Fiverr transaction or instruct a PA. I get what I want – automatically. The problem here is these plug-ins are often flawed and may have a life span dependent on what Google, Amazon, eBay, Facebook, YouTube or another giant does to its algorithms.

Internet marketers are always at the mercy of industry giants.

Those making lots of money online have been at it for quite a while. They’ve built a solid business on a foundation of proven business practices. Quite often they sell information or access. I mean information you may find in a book or classroom. And the access is to a program or group where one learns ins and outs of specific approaches to business.

It’s long proven one learns better in a group setting than alone. That’s why I encourage everyone interested in an online business to attend events. There you absorb ideas and learn from those actually succeeding at what you want to achieve.

We learn in many ways. Start today with ‘Positioning: The Battle For Your Mind. Link up with successful people in a business interesting to you. Find that piece of the Internet money-making pie that excites you. Then dive in.

Success is not doing what you like. Success is liking what you do.

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