Huh? then Ah-ha!


After writing about Elusivity and Internet Marketing this morning, I put in the 3rd CD of the audio book, Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die (I highly recommend it so far). Everything I was writing about, and frankly, trying to put into words, was iterated on the audio book. I’ve never taken a marketing class (or business for that matter), so maybe this is like week 3 in marketing, but it was neat to hear what I have been discovering from my own business experiences. The authors detailed how you need to create a “Huh?” in your audience, and then “fill” the knowledge or end-of-the-story gap with something that clicks and says “Ah-ha!”. I really liked the Huh? and Ah-ha!, it just stuck with me. Hopefully it sticks with you too.

Some other words related to “elusivity” include “curiosity” and “gap theory”. The idea is to help your customer realize they don’t know something, and to pique their interest enough that they can’t live without knowing, or filling that knowledge gap. A quick story I probably should have included on my post this morning… A guy walked by the booth, glanced at the vinyl poster we had up, not more than 2 seconds. He kept walking down the next row of booths. After getting past the second set of booths he turned around, and headed back to our booth. He couldn’t stand not knowing exactly what we did. We didn’t spell it out for him on our vinyl poster, and I think if we had we would have lost him. Our sign gave him something related to what he was interested in, but didn’t spell out exactly what we did (that’s hard to do on a sign anyway). Instead of trying to spell it out and fail, we grabbed his attention, he asked US what we did, and then we were able to give him a quality spiel on what we do.

A great comment by Patrick Schaber emphasized the Ah-ha point, which I was trying to do in my post but didn’t quite achieve. You CANNOT create a Huh? and then leave them hanging. They will be disappointed, disgruntled, upset, and not happy. Either that or they will just leave (that’s bad). An example in the audio book was about movies, how most of us will usually sit through even a bad movie to find out what happened (after we were given the scenario/problem/mystery). You have to resolve everything in the end, and that doesn’t mean you make me search for it on your site either, or wait until next week.

That reminds me (this is a very casual post if you can’t tell), several weeks ago there was some guy that was “retiring” from SEO and was moving into something new (a lot of you know who and what I am talking about). There was a sign up for a free 2 hour phone conference announcing what he was doing next. At first there wasn’t too much hype, but then the hype rolled in, and oh my did it roll in. No SEO, no PPC, make millions in a few days, blah blah blah blah blah. That’s when my ears shut off. I missed the phone call, but lucky for me I was put on 3 or 4 email lists. 🙂 A video series was released. The first video revealed….nothing. The second video…not much more. The emails would come about how the servers were getting hit so hard, they are trying to answer everyone’s questions, and there was a countdown for signing up.

I’m sorry, but if you can’t tell me how to do it without all that hype, (a) I’m not listening, and (b) I don’t like you. Plus, if you can make so much money that way, rinse and repeat and keep doing that, don’t waste your time with hype and lackluster video after pointless video telling us about it. Oh, and if you want to know what the big deal was, it’s co-registration. Whoopee, what a breakthrough.

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