Every company has Untold Story assets that are hiding in plain sight, and every company has Limiting Factors that are holding them back.
This is how you lift a company to new heights:
1. Uncover the Untold Stories.
2. Devise a plan to overcome the Limiting Factors.
Untold Stories and Limiting Factors are not always related.
Limiting Factors usually stem from
(A.) Company Culture (the vibe of the hive)
(B.) Competitive Environment (strengths of opponents and adversaries)
Untold Stories always begin at the intersection of Who and Why.
(A.) Who pulled the trigger? (Origin Story)
(B.) Why did that trigger exist? (Character Diamond)
Great ad campaigns require Interesting Characters.
Interesting Characters require:
(A.) Character Diamonds (Four conflicted, defining characteristics that cause this character to think, act, speak, and see the world the way they do.)
(B.) Origin Stories (What happened that put them on the path to where they are now?)
Customers should hear each Untold Story in the appropriate Emotional Environment.
The appropriate Emotional Environment is created by
(A.) The opening sentence of the ad (FMI – First Mental Image)
(B.) Media scheduling (what is the customer thinking and feeling right now?)
College professors, con-men, and private equity groups believe the primary goal of an ad writer should be to communicate the features and benefits of the product to the customer. But Wizards of Ads know the primary goal of an ad writer is to bond the hearts of the public to the advertiser.
Listeners hear these customer-bonding ads and think, “Wow! You, too? I thought I was the only one.” These customer-bonding ads cause the client’s name to be the one that customers think of first and feel the best about.
Untold Stories hide in the hearts of advertisers. Customer-bonding ads are born when you uncover those stories and write them in an unpredictable way.
Predictable ads are boring.
Here is a warm and happy customer-bonding ad Michael Torbay found hiding in the heart of his client on a cold and grey winter day:
MARK: “It was the Pop-Tart that did it. I’m Mark Tapper. Someone recently asked me about the day I knew I had to propose to my girlfriend. Spoiler alert: she’s my wife now. But somehow the sound of that toaster popping made me feel so ‘single.’ I loved being single, make no mistake! I got to travel, tried on a few different jobs, went back to school, reinvented myself a couple of times. I was a-work-in-progress when I met Leora. She believed in me more than I did. That was what was on my mind when it suddenly popped: It wasn’t about me anymore. It was about us, together. That’s what I think about when I come to work at Tapper’s Jewelry. I get to meet people at the most exciting time of their lives, and we get to show you a diamond that will express how you feel right now, forever. Come to Tapper’s, tell us your story.”
These are the moments in that ad when a customer might think, “Wow! You, too?”
1. I suddenly felt so ‘single.’
2. I reinvented myself a couple of times.
3. I was a-work-in-progress when I met [my wife]
4. She believed in me more than I did.
5. It wasn’t about me anymore. It was about us, together.
Here is another customer-bonding ad for a client in the same category.
Listen closely and you’ll hear Jacob Harrison ask his client a question off-mic. Notice how this ad is equally powerful, but comes at you from an entirely different direction:
DEVIN: Brad Lawrence, owner of Gold Casters Fine Jewelry.
BRAD: When I opened the store, I had no money. We didn’t have the money for inventory. I brought wax models from school to use to cast into projects for customers. Hence the name Gold Casters. Things were so tight at times, I remember the backside of my wedding ring was gone because I didn’t have the money to buy gold to size rings. So I’d cut the pieces out of the back of my wedding band to use as gold stock to size rings for customers. Then when we could afford to, then I’d replace it back on my band.
JACOB: Did your wife ever know about that?
BRAD: [laughter] Well, when she saw the gap in my ring, obviously she did! But when you looked at it from the top, it looked perfect. It was a very, very humble beginning. I always believed that if you took care of the customers, that the customers would come back, and that you could build a business that way.
DEVIN: Gold Casters at Second and Washington in Bloomington.
These are the moments in that ad when a customer might think, “Wow! You, too?”
- I had no money…
- things were so tight at times that I had to…
- …cut the pieces out of the back of my wedding band – [sacrifice something precious so that I could do the right thing for someone else] – to use as gold stock to size rings for customers.
- I always believed that if you took care of the customers, that the customers would come back.
Here’s a similar story, but told in an entirely different way:
SEAN: Standing at the engagement ring counter, I felt like Oliver Twist asking for another bowl of porridge. “Please, sir. May I see that one?”
SARAH: Sean Jones, owner of Spence Diamonds,
SEAN: The jeweler looked me over, then reluctantly unlocked the showcase and told me the price of the engagement ring.
SARAH: What happened next?
SEAN: I swallowed hard. No way could I afford that one!
SEAN: You’ll never feel like that at Spence Diamonds.
SARAH: We are on your side.
SARAH: Our prices are out in the open, just like our engagement rings.
SEAN: Pick up as many as you want.
SARAH: Try them on.
SEAN: You’re going to have a good time here.
SARAH: We trust you. We built this whole store for you
SEAN: And we’ve got your back when it comes to prices, too.
SARAH: Come to Spence Diamonds.
SEAN: You hate the ads,
SARAH: but you’ll love the store.
SEAN: Great prices
SARAH: Fabulous engagement rings
ROY: and diamonds that sparkle in the dark. [sfx – scream of joy]
DEVIN: Spence, at the corner of Glenmore and Macleod Trail South.
In this next customer-bonding ad, notice how Omar and Tarik begin by telling you how their competitors can do the same things they do. But as the ad progresses, you realize that what Omar and Tarik do is extremely rare and beautiful.
OMAR: Anyone with a license to practice law can represent you when you’ve been injured.
TARIK: Any lawyer can call the insurance company and try to resolve your case.
OMAR: But if the insurance company says, “Go fly a kite,” not every lawyer is willing to take your case to court.
TARIK: The worst thing is when the insurance company decides that it’s cheaper to wear you down than it is to pay you the amount they owe you.
OMAR: So they just keep throwing lawyers at you, gambling that your law firm won’t be willing to cover the expense of a long, protracted fight.
TARIK: At Habbas Law, we believe that a personal injury lawyer should take care of every client like they were a member of their own family.
OMAR: That’s one of the things we do, and we do it very well.
TARIK: That’s why we don’t back away when insurance companies dare us to match them dollar-for-dollar.
OMAR: We believe in you. We believe in your case. And we believe we can win.
TARIK: Call Habbas Law at 1-800-INJURED.
OMAR: When you talk with Habbas Law, your day gets a whole lot better.
AUDIO SIGNATURE: H-A-double-Beee-A-S Laaaw dot com
Notice the unusual closing sentence in this final example of customer bonding:
TARIK: I’m Tarik Habbas. My father is Omar Habbas. I’m usually on these radio ads with him, but today I asked him if I could fly solo. When I was a young boy, I would sit beneath his desk and listen to him fight with insurance companies for his clients. And sometimes a client would come in and start crying, and hug my father, and thank him for saving them. A surgeon in a hospital saved their physical life, but my father saved their financial life when he made the insurance company do the right thing. I knew I wanted to be like him when I grew up. Most of the lawyers at Habbas Law have been with us for several years. Every law firm in the state wants to hire them, but our lawyers don’t want to work anywhere else. They like going home at night feeling good about what they did that day. When you’ve been injured and you’re in pain, you’re not ready to fight a big corporation. But we are. Making big companies do the right thing is why we get out of bed every morning. At Habbas Law, we don’t just do it for the money. We do it for you. I’m Tarik Habbas of Habbas Law. And that’s all I’ve got to say.
Does it surprise you that Omar and Tarik of Habbas Law are deeply loved by the people of Northern California, and that Mark Tapper, Brad Lawrence, and Sean Jones are three of the most successful jewelers in North America?
- Customer-Bonding is possible for every business owner who has good motives, a big heart, and a lot of courage and humility.
- Customer-bonding happens when a business owner talks openly about things that most people would share only with their closest friends.
- Customer-bonding requires vulnerability.
- Customer-bonding is a long-term strategy that always works, and it is cumulative; it works better and better the longer you do it.
- The typical customer-bonding campaign requires an ongoing series of 65% bonding ads – mingled with 35% sales activation ads – that air 52 weeks per year, forever.
- Customer-bonding isn’t a gimmick. It is a lifestyle.
- Customer-Bonding is not recommended for business owners who are anxious, nervous, twitchy, or vain. It is recommended only for people like you; people who are patient, confident, calm, and compassionate.
Win the heart and the mind will follow! The mind will always find logic to justify what the heart has already decided.
Roy H. Williams
On her journey to the corner office at Microsoft, Jane Boulware was hit on, spit on, and shot at.
She says Microsoft was a viper pit known for eating its young. Jane was one of the top ten women at Microsoft by the time she turned 40, working for Steve Ballmer and bringing home the big bucks. Today Jane pulls back the curtain on her experience in the upper ranks of a global technology giant as she shares with roving reporter Rotbart all the good things – and the bad things – that entrepreneurs and business owners can learn from her experience. Pop some popcorn. Get comfortable in your chair. The Jane Boulware Show is about to begin. MondayMorningRafio.com.