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Why Fluff is Good in Marketing

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If I had a pound for every time someone said to me that they don’t like fluff in marketing, then I’d probably be shooting off on holiday right now. People seem to view the softer side of marketing as some sort of weakness. But what they don’t understand is that without the fluff, you’re just an empty shell.

Let’s start off by defining what I mean by “fluff”. This is the emotional side of marketing. This is where you start to show personality and inject more feeling into how you present yourself.

The alternative is that you study data and your approach is far more technical or scientific. You follow a formulaic approach and you just get the job done.

Have I ever known anyone find real success without emotion in their marketing? No. And I don’t think it’s likely you’ll see success unless you treat people like people.

Why Fluff?

I always find it really surprising how marketing is so often viewed as a whole different way of talking to people. I’ve come to realise that many people can’t see past the computer and they can’t imagine that they’re talking to actual human beings on the other side.

Some people even go as far as to define their ‘ideal customer’ with great precision, yet when they send out an email or a social media post, it’s all done in their voice and done in the way they want to talk – and not that of the ideal customer’s.

Modern day trained marketers no longer write out a list of USPs. We no longer make a list of pain points and then somehow try to make sure each one is ticked off on our website.

What we do instead is find a way to make the business different and appealing.

If you were face to face with someone, trying to convince them to do something, you’d tailor your words accordingly. You might choose to soften the person up first with a compliment. You’d find a way to ensure them that doing this something is in their best interests. You’d make sure that whatever you were saying had appeal.

Because ultimately who you are and how you want to speak is irrelevant. If you want to convince someone to do something, it has to be all about them. And that’s marketing.

Real Life

Imagine you’re in a room with someone and you need to convince them to buy your new state of the art vacuum cleaner. Which approach do you think is going to get a better response?

Approach 1

Our company was established in 1985.

The vacuum cleaner is already used by 40% of households.

The latest version, launched in 2023, takes vacuuming to a new level.

99.9% of dust particles are sucked up within seconds.

Approach 2

Make vacuuming fun. Yes, it will leave your floors cleaner than ever. Yes, it will remove all that pesky pet hair. Yes, it will leave a beautiful scent behind. But that’s not why our customers are flocking to buy our new vacuum cleaner. It’s because of how much fun it is. Zoom across the room with the dazzling lights, and challenge yourself to find a corner it won’t fit into.

We make mundane chores something to look forward to. Try it in store to see for yourself.

You might think this is an exaggerated example. But I see website after website share empty statistics. And who knows for sure if they’re even true? And then, more importantly, who cares? It’s great that 40% of other people use it and it’s wonderful that it does the job it’s meant to do. But there’s nothing wrong with my current vacuum cleaner, so why should I even listen?

Human Approach

Humans are driven by emotion. We simply can’t make a decision without emotion being involved somewhere. It’s how we operate. So if you recoil from the idea of having fluff in your marketing, then you’re hindering your chances of being able to connect with people in the best way that humans connect.

If your leads aren’t coming in as you’d want them to, if no one is visiting your website, and if people aren’t really engaging with you on social media, then I challenge you to make a change in your approach. Stop trying to find new things to say across new platforms, and instead inject some heart into what you’re already doing.

You can still stand for something. You can still have a voice. But stop and think how you’d talk to your audience in real life, and start to adopt that into your marketing.

Throw the formalities and the boring stats out of the window, and tell your clients something that you think they’ll really care about.

Don’t believe it will work? Why not try it and see? If you’re not getting the leads in, what have you got to lose?

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