online marketing

An Essential Marketing Principle: Give Before You Try to Get

give before gettingExperts have talked about this before. How many times have you read about the importance of ‘adding value’ for your audience? How many times have you read about ‘building trust’ with your readers/prospects? 

Many, many times. You know it well. Every marketing guru has spoken about this topic. I’m sick of hearing it. But it STILL bears repeating.

Because some people still don’t get it. What’s the underlying principle for successful online marketing, selling or networking? The art of giving before you try to get. Before you get something from someone, you need to first give them a reason for them to give it to you.

It makes sense, doesn’t it? Don’t you know that everyone has walls around them? Don’t you see them at all? They don’t like to be scammed out of their money. That’s why they’re cautious and won’t just click to buy immediately. They don’t like to waste their hard earned salary on crappy products or services. That’s why they do a thorough research online. 

They don’t want to be lied to. That’s why they are hesitant to believe what you say or claim. They don’t want their feelings to be exploited. That’s why they are wary about trusting you with their true thoughts. They have been fooled before and no one wants to feel stupid again.

It’s a defense mechanism designed for self-preservation in a life that is nasty, brutish and short. Living ain’t easy. People are fed-up with hard-sells and sledge-hammer pitches. They’re sick of hustlers always running game on them. Their walls grow stronger, reinforced by the plaster of bad experiences. Once they pigeon-hole you as a ’spammer/scammer’, it’s all over. Don’t bother with getting them to take out their wallets. Won’t happen.

There is a fool-proof way to get people to lower their defenses and commit. You just need to manage their impressions of you. You need to change what they think about what you’re doing. You’re not spamming, you’re offering a product that is designed to fulfill needs. You’re not a money-hungry marketer, you’re a passionate individual who loves to help people achieve their goals. Reframing and re-adjusting the prospect’s image of your brand.

So here it comes. Here’s the part when I tell you to ‘always add value’ and ‘build trust’. But let’s refashion this proverbial tip on selling. Let’s put a spin on value or trust and combine them into a single actionable guideline: Always focus on giving before trying to get.

Give them helpful free content. Give them answers to their questions. Give them a freebie. Point them to tools they need and things they should know. Give them tips they can instantly use in their lives/business. Give them pleasant surprises. Give them interaction. Give them promises you can keep. Develop a history of giving. Be known as a giver.

“This person has given me many valuable things. I have benefited from these gifts. I like her. I will pay attention to what she says. I think I will trust her words. I will lower my guard a little and run with it. What else could go wrong? I’ve only had good experiences with her so far. She has proven herself to be beneficial to me. I think I may…. no, I will commit and take a chance this time. It’ll be fine, I’m sure. Don’t worry too much.”

These are exactly the thoughts you want them to think. This is the inner dialog you want in their heads as they look at your proposition, as they wander and explore your website. This is how you get them to buy, subscribe, agree and take action on your suggestions.

Don’t mass spam your links all over the web and think that you’ll get someone’s trust or money easily. That’s a silly strategy. You’re not selling to robots or animals. You’re selling to people who care about the seller. Get what you want by first giving unconditionally. Manage what people think or feel about you and you’ll get what want easily.

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An Essential Marketing Principle: Give Before You Try to Get

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