Steve Cranford is the creative chairman of the New York agency WHISPER. When I asked him why in the world a marketing firm would be called WHISPER instead of SHOUT, he replied: “The most important information you can share is whispered one-on-one.”
That's profound. So simple and so true.
The most important information you can share is whispered one-on-one.
Think about it.
When you take out an ad or post to your blog and social media sites, you are broadcasting to the world. You're talking to hundreds or (hopefully) thousands of people who might see your message.
Because of this public forum, the language is less personal than you would use in a private conversation. Everyone knows you're talking to everyone else.
There's nothing wrong with this, but when you want results, I encourage you to whisper – to communicate with a single person.
Anatomy of a Whisper
A client told me she was getting great results for her special sale by contacting people individually, but bemoaned that her broadcasts weren’t achieving the same response.
It makes sense, I said.
People like to be treated as individuals. We like to know that you care about us and want a personal relationship.
Broadcasts – whether through email, Instagram, Facebook, or a blog – will never equal the power of personal attention.
If you are worried about bothering people on your list or if marketing has become a drag for you, it’s time to get more personal. It’s time to whisper.
Sending out hundreds of emails or postcards should absolutely be part of every marketing strategy today, but this shouldn’t be your only method for encouraging people to act.
Whisper to individuals on your list in the following four ways.
1. Add Personal Messages
Add personal emails, texts, and Facebook private messages to your marketing mix, like those my client wrote. These are messages that are addressed to a single person using the person’s name. Hi Sally, for example.
You can send personal messages to invite an individual to your event, to tell them you were just thinking of them, or to share information that you know will be helpful.
You might also send a private response to someone else's bulk email – perhaps one you never requested. Rather than being annoyed, use the moment as an opportunity to connect: This looks wonderful. I wish I could be there!
2. Send Real Mail
You know that I love real mail, but postcards can look almost as impersonal as bulk email. Send postcards one at a time rather than in bulk. This helps you focus on and appreciate the individual recipients.
Writing on the back of your postcards automatically makes them more personal. Anything handwritten will also receive more attention than printed-only mail.
3. Pick Up The Phone
When you receive an email inquiry about your art, pick up the phone and call instead of responding with an email. Your email looks like everything else in an inbox, but your voice – full of warmth and gratitude – is uniquely your own.
Wanna take it a step further …
4. Make a Short Video
You'll stand apart when you send a video to someone who:
- Is having a rough time.
- Has a big presentation, performance, or exhibition.
- Is celebrating a birthday or anniversary.
- Did something special for you.
Listen To The Whispers
Sharing your message in the above forms is a good start, but the most powerful attention you can give someone is to stop and listen rather than always being the message deliverer.
What’s important to them? What struggles do they have? How can you be of service?
Marketing to individuals rather than only in bulk takes more time, but yields a higher quality list of contacts. When in doubt, whisper.