Changes in Today’s Marketplace #12


This is the twelfth in a series of what has changed in customer perceptions and resultant buying behaviors.


Change #12 – Curiosity Far Outweighs Convincing as a Traffic Building Strategy


Prior to 2008, convincing customers to inquire and buy was the way to do business.  Every business focused on growth was constantly exploring and creating new ways to convince consumers to inquire and buy from them.  After the economic downturn when no amount of convincing was working as effectively, the focus by many shifted and was and continues to be lower prices or fees to build traffic and inquiries.  As a result, value has been reduced to near zero and commoditization grips nearly every industry sector.  Conversely, many business people and professionals have seen the light and are using curiosity over convincing to increase inquiries and sales.  They are conveying in the consumers’ language the promise of value that they will receive by doing business with them.


By communicating the value consumers receive from their business or practice, they are stimulating curiosity and thus inquiries on two levels:

1)      An emotional curiosity to find out how this business can actually deliver the outcome their promise of value is making, and

2)      Curiosity on how their functional needs can actually be met whether it be to solve, identify, experience, or any myriad number of things.


There are hundreds of examples of this successful use of curiosity as a traffic building strategy.  A few are:

–          Lazy Boy Furniture – their promise of value: “Live Life Comfortably”

–          FedEx – their promise? “When You Absolutely Positively Need It Overnight”

–          Michelin – articulates their promise of value as “A Better Way Forward”

–          Dollar General – conveys real value with “Save Time. Save Money. Everyday.”


Note that they don’t talk about their products and services or expertise or perceived dominance, as in “We are #1.” They don’t talk about who they are or how they do things or their attributes.  Instead, they message in every way possible what they will do for the consumer solely from the buyer’s perspective.  Following this path of declaring value and outcome from the buyer’s perspective creates definitive consumer responsiveness beginning with curiosity.  And this curiosity leads to inquiries, and ultimately to purchases.  Consequently, these customer-centric firms are winning new customers.  They have recognized that a selling proposition is about convincing.  A promise of value and real outcome is compelling.  Why?  Today’s consumer knows the difference between a promise and a proposition!


In every case listed above, their conveyance of value creates curiosity and compels consumers to inquire and buy.


Ask yourself, are you still using a selling proposition to convince people to inquire and buy or a clear delineation of value to be received?


To determine how you can use curiosity over convincing to capture new business,

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