Let’s start with a question about noise. How do you feel when after a long day when you can finally shut down all things digital, turn off the TV and enjoy a cup of tea in peace?
Does that quiet moment taste better than the constant noise in your head? I bet it does, even if not for long.
The business world is a noisy one.
With the world at our fingertips through Google we have access to business consultants or so called “gurus”, who convince small businesses use ALL available channels.
Noise levels increase: we promote and advertise as if our lives depended on it.
Everyone wants to go viral. Everyone wants millions of listeners, followers, friends, fans. Everyone is fighting for the masses without listening to the masses, only focussed on being louder, more outrageous, funnier, more controversial than the next guy.
The (Business) World is a Dinner Party.
You think you need to shout to be heard by everyone around the table. The trouble with that is that everyone else thinks the same.
When this happens the noise level just builds and builds and higher and sooner rather than later no one talks to anyone: people just shout.
You think you must shout loud to bring new listeners to your broadcast and by doing that you annoy those who sit next to you, maybe to the point that they move away, to another room, to another dinner party.
While shouting you hear nothing, not even your own voice or words. But that doesn’t matter, no one is listening anyway: you could shout in language you just invented and no one would pay attention.
You could shout something in repetition and still no one would be moved by it.
When Everyone Shouts – You Should Whisper
Have you noticed how noise alienates: it is a natural human reaction to move away, to avoid, hide and block out.
Just like the kid making a lot of noise to grab your attention or to get what they want, you start to ignore it.
Yet when you whisper – people become curious. They quiet down and turn to you.
At your next dinner party, when people around the table form small topic groups and everyone is deep in conversation, try this: start whispering to someone next to you and watch how long it takes for other conversations to fade down.
When others realise that nearby is a conversation so important that it needs to be conducted in sottovoce, (you will not even have to talk about anything secret or outrageous just whisper ) see how long it takes for all eyes to turn on you.
Everyone Wants To Stand Out In This Noisy World By Adding More Noise.
Let us say you just wrote a blog, about SEO and you love it. So does your assistant or best friend.
It is fresh, unique, has a twist (usually ridiculous click-bite title) and you are damn sure no one ever thought about this angle before. It would be easy to check and Google it but you’re too busy rushing to publish it.
You have listened to the social media “gurus” and business consultants who have told everyone that more content is better than good content. Actually it matters very little what you shout about, it only must be loud and hopefully convert into vital numbers.
SEO, the modern cardiogram of business life, depends on numbers that, apparently, depend on the volume of one’s noise.
The blog is posted and you already see your numbers (SEO, shares, likes, engagement, revenue) going up with a speed of light.
In the same tower building, two floors down, in an office exactly like yours, someone is feeling the same rush.
They also wrote a SEO blog with unique perspective!
Their title makes them smile from ear to ear. They just clicked “Publish” on their Wordpress website, which is hosted by the same domain provider as yours.
I checked to see the noise level halfway through writing this blog: there were already 3,617,758.00 blog posts written and published at 6 pm in UK.
By the end of the day in America the number rose to 5,467,962.00 posts. [Source - http://www.worldometers.info/blogs/]
Abundance Of Information Creates Deficit Of Attention.
I run two businesses but you will not have seen any advertising linked to either of them. That is for two reasons.
One - you would probably skip it anyway, like any other type of advertising that comes across your screens, so what would be the point of me spending my marketing pounds on something that goes straight to the digital bin?
Two – acquiring new customers is (on average) 12 times more expensive (let alone time consuming) than advertising to and convincing existing customers.
New customers spend less than loyal ones, and focusing on chasing new customers we often make those loyal switch brands and leave.
I made a point of growing my businesses by providing exceptional customer service instead of advertising or marketing on digital media. Existing customers and referrals are the source of all my revenue and my marketing spend is minimal, decreasing (or at least not growing) each year as I develop.
I do not shout around the dinner table. I whisper to those sitting next to me. They go to other dinner parties and talk about me to others, whispering. Have you ever considered a pay-for-email NewsLetter?
From my experiences, the best (the most informative, the most valuable,) are the ones that do not come free, yet it is hard to find them.
A businessman I know, who doesn’t want to be named here, has two newsletters: one is for Customer Service folks (with sprinkle of Personal Development tips and hints).
Another is strictly Sales! They both cost £10 each per month. You cannot sign up to them, you must be introduced from the inside.
He does not have Facebook Groups, does not run a podcast or a “vlog”, doesn’t even have a website!
Can you imagine running a business without a website? Yet he has a projected revenue of £250,000 this year.
He does all this by only selling only to his subscribers.
During the last three months no one unsubscribed from his newsletters.
Now that is the power of whispering. If that is not the way to use existing customers to do marketing for you, I do not know what is.