It’s Not What You Say, It’s HOW You Say It

Marketing TipsWhen it comes to marketing or copywriting, there’s no doubt that we can’t afford to ignore the power of words and how we use them to get our message across.  Whether it’s the written word or the spoken word is, largely, immaterial but how we put them together, how we frame our words, who’s perspective we consider and how we engage the emotions are all important elements in our communication.

Now, I don’t know whether the following video is genuine or somewhat contrived.  Either way, it clearly demonstrates that it’s not what you say, it’s how you say it that makes all the difference.  Take a minute to watch the video and then we’ll consider, exactly what’s taken place here.

What is it that makes all the difference?

In very simple terms, when we read the words; ‘I’m blind, please help’, all we really consider is the statement of fact that the man is blind and, whilst not wanting to appear too harsh, I suspect that most people would think something along the lines of; that’s a shame but ……. so what?

You see, the statement is factual, logical even, and it fails to engage us.  It fails to create any real emotional connection.

When the lady changes the words to read; ‘It’s a beautiful day and I CAN’t see it’ two things happen.  Firstly, the statement causes us to stop in our tracks and look at the man’s plight from a different perspective.  It makes us, kind of, ‘step into his shoes’ and start to appreciate how his blindness really affects him.

It causes us to imagine and to visualise what it would be like to be blind.  To miss out on seeing such a beautiful day.

It's A Beautiful DaySecondly, by causing us to change our perspective in this way and ‘step into his shoes’, the words immediately create an emotional connection to the mans situation.  And, it’s that emotional connection that makes all the differnce in the way people react to the words.

There is one other thing that I think is worth mentioning.  The lady uses the word ‘and’ rather than the word ‘but’ when she links the two statements that the sentance contains.  When she links ‘It’s a beautiful day’ with ‘I CAN’t see it’.

Just try reading through that sentance and alternating the link, firstly using ‘and’ to link the two statements, then using ‘but’.

I feel that using the word ‘and’ is much softer than using the word ‘but’.  Possibly because the word ‘but’ is often used when we make excuses or when we’re being a little argmentative or challenging.  I just wonder how much difference using the word ‘but’ would make to the response?

Now this is a very simple analysis but how can we learn from this when it comes to our own marketing efforts?

Step in To Your Customers ShoesJust make sure that, whenever you’re composing your own marketing message, you use words in such a way that you ‘step in to’ your customers shoes, see things from their perspective and cause them to imagine or visualise your message in a way that causes an emotional reaction.

After all, it’s our emotions that motivate us to take action.

If you’ve found this tip useful, please feel free to share it. And don’t forget to leave your feedback in the box, below.

Have a great day,

Steve Bimpson

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2 Comments to “It’s Not What You Say, It’s HOW You Say It”

  1. Ludwig says:

    Wow. I really loved this. It’s an eye-opener for me. How many people’s lives we can change by simply walking in their shoes. Great tip, Steve.

  2. Steve B says:

    You’re very welcome, Ludwig

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