Like most intro classes, the answer was broad and short.

But across the last decade, that answer has evolved from identifying a problem, to highlighting a customer’s problem, to provoking fear within your customer because of that problem.

In short, advertising is panic-inducing.

Advertising is fear.

Fear of missing out, fear of being duped, fear of getting scammed, fear of the product being out-of-style in the matter of weeks, fear of there not being enough room, fear of not being an early adopter.

The fear can, and will, go on and on.

And as marketers, sadly, we capitalize on the fear and we fuel panic through our urgency and our provocative calls-to-action.

Ultimately, the panic results in a conversion (yay).

But as a small business owner and as a marketer, you’re faced with an interesting dilemma.

Because life is not about the panic, and then the resolution of the panic.

Your business isn’t selling panic.

But by promoting so much fear and inducing so much panic, ultimately your business will be found guilty by association.

We’ve gotten to a point where there’s so much panic and urgency and fear that there isn’t room left for peace or serenity.

The peace and serenity you get when you breathe in a full breath of crisp fresh air, or embrace the quiet, or sit back and admire the red tints of a new sunrise, a new day.

I don’t think you can achieve that same level of peace from buying any product.

Urgency is an important part of your marketing message, but so is the balance between what your brand stands for (an escape from the norm? a trusted advisor?)

You can’t be both.

You can’t strike fear before the prospect converts but then turn your face to show the other, nicer, more welcoming side of your brand, now that you’re satisfied with a new customer.

Throughout your marketing messsaging there needs to be a story, a continuity.

Finding that balance is difficult, but key.

Related Posts