by Jeffrey Hedquist
Back in the ‘70s I discovered the work of Tony Schwartz, an audio and advertising genius who has influenced me greatly. Tony has been called “the most famous radio person you probably never heard of.”
We all use the terms hard sell and soft sell, but they’re really techniques of presentation. Tony always went deeper. He went inside to build rapport and trust with listeners. Then instead of telling them what to do he evoked their response.
One of the important things he pointed out is that what people recall WHILE HEARING a message is more important than what they recall AFTER they’ve heard it.
Tony used to say that people are born without “earlids,” so we’re always hearing. However, what lifts our perception from just hearing to listening is something that concerns or interests us.
The aim of advertising, Mr. Schwartz said, should not be to introduce viewers to new ideas, but rather to bring out ones that were already lurking subconsciously in the mind.
While we‘re listening, emotional triggers are firing and we’re creating a feeling about the message and the advertiser.
What’s going on in our minds? Anxiety about not having enough income to support ourselves and our family, or to retire, not enough time to meet our obligations or career aspirations, desire for a better home, car, wardrobe, maybe health and aging concerns, education, safety, hunger… what are your client’s prospects thinking?
With the answer in mind, hop onto their train of thought, and tell them an emotional story about themselves, address their concerns, help them find solutions.
Once you’ve hit an emotional vein, then suggestions will lead your audience to make decisions in their own self-interest, when your client serves that self-interest.
Tony asks us to forget about hard sell or soft sell. Just sell deep.
For samples of this amazing man’s work I invite you to go to http://www.tonyschwartz.org.
For questions about how to apply these principles, email