The big sign said, "Domestic Passengers are Welcome to Shop Here."
So, I went inside, selected a bottle of my favorite bourbon, and brought it to to cashier.
She told me that I couldn't buy it, because I'm a domestic passenger.
"But the sign says domestic passengers can," I said.
As if on cue, she responded, "You need to read the bottom of the sign."
She was right - way down at the bottom of the sign, in a much smaller print was the message:
"Only passengers holding international boarding passes are allowed to purchase liquor and tobacco."
Never mind that 75% of their shelf space is dedicated to the stuff that the Welcomed Domestic Shopper can't buy.
Duty Free America lured me into their store with a cleverly-deceptive sign. Technically, the sign was truthful. The asterisk that followed the BIG WELCOME MESSAGE is the author's way of saying, "What you just read isn't the entire truth; if you want to know the entire truth, then you have to find and read the footnotes.
The point is this: If your BIG MESSAGE requires footnotes to be true, then your BIG MESSAGE alone is not true. Make it true; customers deserve straight talk; we deserve plain and simple truth.
When it comes to sales and marketing, there are three types of Truth:
Customers are emotional beings, and therefore we only trust one kind of Truth, and that's Plain and Simple Truth. Technically True Truth makes us suspicious. And the third isn't type isn't worthy of discussion.
Is there any Technically True Truth embedded in your customer-facing messaging? If there is, consider replacing it wiit Plain and Simple Truth. While Plain and Simple Truth may not lure as many prospects into your pipeline, those of us that do come inside will more loyal, long-term profitable customers. As for the prospects that are turned away by the truth? They weren't going to buy from you, anyway. So why invest the resources in unqualified prospects?
What type of truth does your marketing speak?
And on which type of Truth do you want to build your reputation?