“Our business is infested with idiots who try to impress by using pretentious jargon.” – David Ogilvy
Around 18 months ago I was shopping at Westfield Miranda for a hair dryer with my lovely girlfriend Nicole. Why girls can not use a towel or oily rag is beyond me (that’s how I dried my hair even when it was long), however; I still thought I would help her.
We entered the first store which was a hair dressing style store. Lots of hair products and devices so I was pretty happy that there was a sales assistant to help us. A young blonde girl approached us as we gazed blankly to the wall of hair dryers. After uncovering that we wanted a hair dryer she grabs this particular model and proceeds to tell Nicole that she should buy this particular model. Why this model? Because it had “ionic technology”. “this ionic technology is new on the market”, “all the hair dressers are using ionic technology” and “ionic technology was the future”. Ummmmmmmm… all valid reasons on why we should buy this particular model of hair dryer but I have one question to all of my readers. What the **** is ionic technology and how is it better then what is currently on the market?
Leaving more confused then we were before entering we went to grab a bite to eat.
On our way out of the food court we passed another store called Hairhouse Warehouse and I was given a less then impressed look by Nicole when I suggested we give them a try. As we entered the store we were greeted by a young man who was fixing up the hair gel display. We approached the hair dryer section of the store and he asked what we were after. Not only did he ask us this question but continued for another five minutes asking things like “how often do you dry your hair?”, “do you curl it?”, “do you colour your hair during the year?” and so forth. Before selecting a hair dryer he had one final request – to touch Nicole’s hair. I was ready to macho up because no one touches my girlfriend but me until he explained that different hair thickness had different requirements.
With one swoop he selected a hair dryer then proceeded to tell her exactly why this hair dryer was the most suitable and the amazing thing about his presentation was not once did he mention the price. He didn’t need to discount the product and he didn’t need to justify the price compared to cheaper alternatives. He understood the power of selling and simply linked what the customer needed to his product.
On the other hand the blonde girl at the other shop lived in her own little world and believed everyone was like her. She liked this hair dryer for these reasons and she understood the difference between ionic compared to other technologies. Every conversation she would have about hair dryers (and potentially other products) were based on what she liked. The most important person reading this blog is you. You care about the things that you care about and when someone talks about what they like, we often switch off. We are our own favourite person and as selfish as it sounds, I just care about me and you care about you.
The reason why the Hairhouse Warehouse gentlemen was successful was because he showed genuine interest in me (the consumer). He talked about what I wanted and told us the reasons this product suited us based on what we wanted. I still don’t know if the blonde girl was selling me the best product on the market or the best product that gives her the highest commission or bonus.
Ionic technology and any other forms of jargon means nothing until it is explained to how the customer will benefit and the only way you will find out how the customer will benefit is by asking questions. Just like the guy at Hairhouse Warehouse.