How Do YOU Show and Tell?
We’re all familiar with the (in)famous school activity “show-and-tell.” Some of us dreaded it because it was our first introduction to public speaking (which would later become the bane of our existence). But some of us loved it because we finally had a chance to show our classmates a peek into our after-school lives. You know, the stuff we actually cared about.
Now, we’re in the corporate world and show-and-tell is no longer within the confines of the classroom.
As a salesperson, small business, or corporation, you have to do a lot of showing and telling. Whether it’s through marketing advertisements or networking events, every business has to educate others on who they are and what they represent. After all, the first rule of business is to make a profit, and forging new relationships is a step towards that goal. Yet, many business people still don’t understand how to connect with people in a genuine way.
Unfortunately, we tend to do a lot of “telling” instead of showing.
It’s easier to tell the customer “our services are great” than it is to show them all the high-ratings and testimonials on Yelp. It's even easier to recite the company's mission than it is to give them proof that it's actually being utilized. But which is more effective?
People learn best through storytelling, not by regurgitating a list of facts.
Instead of telling a customer that your company values the environment, show them all of the environmental organizations you donate to every year and why it's important to contribute.
Instead of telling that business prospect that you are an equal opportunity employer, show them a story of how a female co-worker was able to thrive in the workplace.
Instead of only posting your business headshot on social media with a caption about how you’re a “good” realtor, show them a video of you helping couples find the home of their dreams.
Seeing is believing in the business world!
Any business will come off as inauthentic if it markets to every customer the same exact way. Once a customer believes that they’re just a number to you, there’s no turning back - you will lose their trust and their money.
So, if you are passionate about your job or business, show them why! For example, you may not have wanted to see that goofy kid’s turtle during show-and-tell back in the day, but at least it explained why he became a scientist later in life. In the same way, let them in on your experiences by showing how your company made a positive impact on you. Testimonials inspire others to repeat a behavior if it was promising to someone else. So, close the distance by being an example for them!
In the end, we may not have been in love with show-and-tell, but it showed us an awful lot about the people around us. Similarly, you should be showing potential and current customers why an investment or call-to-action is important to you. So be authentic, show them your story, and your success will precede you.