When you’re a small business owner, online marketing can feel puzzling. You find yourself saying, “I don’t understand why this isn’t working,” or, “I’m not sure what I’m supposed to do in this situation.” It’s often helpful to go back to basics…psychology basics, that is.
For instance, you probably heard that you need to “be vulnerable.” You might have heard that means you should talk about mistakes you made and the tough times in your life.
And you may have been tempted to ask, “Is this for real?”
When you look at psychological research, the answer is “maybe.” Based on several studies, I’d suspect your audience will like you more when you seem vulnerable…but only if they believe you’re a successful business owner they look up to. If you’re new, you’d do better to hold that story.
You could also dig deeper into the concept of “vulnerability.”
In her book, Daring Greatly, Brené Brown doesn’t see vulnerability as sharing mistakes and regrets. She sees vulnerability as “uncertainty, risk, and emotional exposure.” It’s about courage: stepping out of your comfort zone and risking a negative experience, when it would be easier to do nothing or do something different.
You probably can think of other areas of marketing that will benefit from a deeper understanding of psychology.
One of the most popular theories relates to the way people are influenced to take action. Many business owners cite Robert Cialdini’s book Influence as one of the most valuable sources for marketing strategy.
Some people express concern about the ethics of using psychology to attract buyers. The truth is, you do have to be ethical in your use of all your marketing tools. But understanding psychology helps you understand what your prospects are thinking so you avoid slipping into sleaze.
In fact, one of the best copywriting strategies is to identify, honestly, who will and will not benefit from your offer.
That’s particularly true if you offer a service. Who wants to work with clients who don’t need what you have?
Sharyn Sheldon, a very ethical marketer, has put together a course designed to help marketers use psychology thoughtfully and ethically. The Psychology of Marketing explains the basic principles of psychology that you can use at each stage of your client’s decision-making process. Find out more and get started here.
Download my free report, “Find What REALLY Motivates Your Clients By Discovering Their Backstory.” Click here for immediate access.