I am not sure whether I am paranoid or not, but it seems like the people who live and work on the streets of Manchester have been getting some hardcore marketing training from somewhere, because the ones I speak to have some mad skills. One guy managed to change the way I think about everything with a single sentence…
Let me tell you the story…
Last night at about midnight I was walking home, back along Deansgate towards Hulme where I live. And this young guy approaches me and asks for money.
He is clearly skint and looking for money for a cup of tea or some food or whatever. Now, as I look at him, even before i was thinking of putting my hand in my pocket, he says to me,
“Thanks mate, everyone else has been ignoring me”
Whether he knows this or not, this simple statement is genius!
This is what he did…
He increased the value of our relationship by acknowledging my attention.
By giving me the gift of thanking me, just for my attention, he instantly created a value exchange of sorts and triggered my reciprocity circuits, massively increasing the chances I would give him something in return. According to Robert Cialdini in his book “Influence” it increases the likelihood by up to FIVE times as much.
So, as I gave the guy a pound, I felt an odd sense of satisfaction. It had felt like we had a real moment of interaction. He acknowledged my effort of attention and I acknowledged his situation by contributing some help.
A deal of equals.
And this got me to thinking about how I talk to my clients and how I create a sense of equality, collaboration and reciprocity.
I am a straight talking and passionate guy and I am very keen to help everyone I work with as much as possible. This can lead to me being, for all the best intentions, a little abrupt sometimes.
The simple sentence to fix this situation and to improve your business?
I need to create a more equal relationship with my clients.
On reflection after this episode last night, I began to consider the following:
- I could spend more time on the process of acknowledging the people I work with, during the collaboration process.
- I could take a little more time to say thank you for listening to or reading about what I believe in.
- I could spend a little more time acknowledging everyone on my mailing list, twitter followers and Facebook friends.
So, right now, let me say thank you for reading this post and sparing the time to read what I write, I do hope it is helpful. I would be delighted if you would share it by clicking one of the social media buttons, or if I can help you with anything, say hi in the comments.
Thank you, your attention is a real blessing…
Because as a wise man once told me “Thanks mate, everyone else ignored me”
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Image by Haloocyn at www.sxc.hu