I don’t know about you, but I love Small Business Saturday—especially when I see a small business doing things right.
Check this out…
A nearby coffee shop has been building its list through its payment processor over the past year…
Here’s how it works:
- Customer buys coffee
- Customer chooses to have the receipt emailed to them, where they have the option to opt-in to the newsletter to get deals (most people say ‘yes’ to get the deals)
- Coffee shop sends regular, entertaining emails filled with specials, notes about special events, even coffee classes for people who want to learn how to be “home baristas”
They do a great job building dialogue, interest, and community via their email campaigns—so much so that they had to expand their shop.
Fast Forward to Black Friday…
This shop has amazing designers, and they’ve been talking up their new Christmas mugs for weeks.
These mugs were supposed to get to the shop in time for their Black Friday specials, but alas shipping delayed their arrival.
Rather than wait for customers to drive to the store, find out the mugs weren’t there, and complain—they took to their email account, briefly explained the situation, and included a discount code people can use (in addition to their Small Business Saturday sale) to soothe the pain of their best customers.
They didn’t wait for the righteous rage, they got ahead of it…
And by focusing attention on the mugs NEW arrival date, plus an awesome new deal, the attention of their customers was drawn to these POSITIVE topics—not the bummer of a shipping delay.
From what I could see after dropping by, things went well: a line out the door, and no more mugs (sold out).
This coffee shop gets it, and it was fun to watch them turn a mistake into an advantage.
But so many businesses miss the boat on that stuff…
Staying Top of Mind when Competition’s Fierce
There’s a psychological phenomenon that afflicts all humans that most small businesses are completely unaware of…
Basically, people assign outsized importance to whatever topic is on their mind at any given moment.
The key to this principle is that the topic gets labeled as important whether or not it’s actually important.
In the case of the coffee shop, the attention was focused on the new deal and the new arrival date of the Christmas mug—those are the topics that became the most important due to their focus in the coffee shop’s communications.
Politicians and the media are very aware of this human trait (researchers call it agenda setting theory), which is why you hear some politicians complain about what news is (and isn’t) being covered.
The more you hear about a topic, the more it’s on your mind; the more a topic is on your mind, the more important you think that topic is.
How Does Agenda Setting Theory Apply to Business Owners?
If people believe that whatever’s on their mind is important (whether or not it actually is), then your ability to influence your audience to consider topics that are important to you and your business can be incredibly powerful for your marketing.
For small businesses, this hardwired psychological quirk can be a huge advantage (I’ll tell you how in a sec)…
The problem is, most business owners do one of two things when it comes to getting their most important topics in front of customers:
- Nothing. They simply don’t know any better, or they don’t know what to do or where to start.
- Too much of the wrong thing. They know they need to get their message out there, so they do—and it’s a catastrophe. They push away more people than they pull in.
Occupying Mind Space is a Double-Edged Sword
Capturing and focusing your audience’s attention on ideas that are important to your business is a powerful tool to get customers and keep them coming back, but it can also work against you if not done correctly.
Remember that while setting the agenda for your audience CAN tell people what to think about, you can’t make them think a certain way about your topic. And if your delivery and message stinks, they’ll remember—and tie that feeling to your business.
This gets you shunted to the “annoying junk peddler” bucket.
So how do you use your audience’s tendency to assign weight to whatever has their attention in a way that benefits them (and your business)?
That is one of the methods I’ll deep dive into in a live web training this Thursday.
How to Influence Your Best Buyers and Get Sales 5X Cheaper Than Your Competitors
We’ll invest 60 minutes revealing exactly what to do to use tech you already have to bring in new and repeat customers…
… all in a way that delights your customers, and keeps them hungry for more contact with your company.
Not only that, but you’ll get these customers 5X cheaper than the competitors in your space by focusing on customers few people think about.
After the content section of this free training, we’ll spend 30-minutes for Q&A so you can find out how to apply the principles covered to your specific needs.
PLUS, those who stay until the end also get a FREE quick start guide to help implement this system and start generating new revenue asap.