The Power of Positive: A Simple Ecommerce Tip that Produces Big Results
There is a reason why the best kept “secrets” are often hidden in plain sight. It’s because more often than not, these “secrets” are the obvious thing that everyone takes for granted. They are the common sense things that very few actually put into practice.
At the time of writing this, the world is in the middle of an economic crisis triggered by the coronavirus as well as social unrest around issues of racism. This isn’t an article about those topics, but it is an important context to use as a framework for learning this powerful principal. The key thing to understand is that there will always be pain in the world, and so this principle applies all the time.
This has been the first global pandemic of our lifetime and we were all completely unprepared. As business leaders, we all have had to decide how we will react to the health and economic concerns around us.
In this article, I’m going to share a common sense secret that we’ve seen be a game-changer, especially in the world of ecommerce (it drives real sales). The best part is that this secret will actually work well for you any time— not solely in the midst of a pandemic, but in everyday life as well.
The Secret Power of Good
So what is this secret and why does it produce great results? It’s simple: Deliver GOOD. Talk about the good instead of the bad. Groundbreaking, I know.
Right now, anxiety is high, but mental illness and stress have actually been on the rise for the last 10 years, long before anyone knew what the coronavirus was. During “normal” seasons, marketers are even contributors to this anxiety in people’s day-to-day life. Marketers often use the tactic of “pushing on customers’ pain points” which actually produces uncomfortable feelings in people in order to get them to act (i.e. make a purchase).
There are times when customers do need to be made aware of their pain points and urged to action, especially when a brand offers a product that can genuinely improve their lives. However, positivity is an even more powerful tactic to use these days and it can actually help alleviate people’s pain.
For example, during the year 2020, there has been non-stop bad news. It’s overwhelming, and people are starved for something more hopeful. Think about it— any time you’re scrolling through news articles or Facebook right now and you see something truly hilarious or heartwarming, it feels like a glass of ice water in the desert. Right?
The truth is, this has always been the case. We’re just feeling it now more than ever in this current season.
And this isn’t just a nice thing to do, it’s a legitimate business strategy that creates real results. For example, think about the Hallmark Channel. They are known for their cheesy, feel-good movies which are produced with a pretty low budget and at a very fast rate. Yet in an age where media companies are struggling big time, Hallmark is a channel that is thriving. Why in the world are they still doing well making sappy, low-budget chick-flicks? It’s because it makes people feel good! Or take John Krasinski’s “Some Good News” Youtube channel. Launched just 2 months ago some videos have as much as 18M views and the channel alone has over 3M subscribers.
It’s clear, people want escapes that give them more joy and hope, and businesses can help do that.
How to Output Positivity in Your Business
Let’s look at how to practically output positivity in your ecommerce brand.
1. Create a genuine initiative.
Create a genuine (not manufactured) initiative that helps bring good news to your audience (customers, subscribers, followers). The initiative can be related to your brand, but it doesn’t have to be. You’ll just want to make sure it makes sense to the audience you normally engage with. It also doesn’t have to be a major project. Try starting with something as simple as wrapping your normal messaging in a more hopeful context.
Sometimes it’s as simple as just telling people why you created your product. A good marketer contextualizes their marketing to be authentically relevant.
2. Run this initiative as a campaign.
Use your marketing calendar to plan out your free and paid content. Create social posts, paid ads, and email campaigns that all push the same positive message. Make sure that this message is authentic and real. Also, make sure to get this message to your existing customers. Some of our best performing emails (in sales) have been sending some positive news to our current customers and not even asking them to buy. And guess what… people still buy.
3. Launch the campaign.
Launch the campaign with no strings attached. The goal here is not to get sales. It’s to bring hope and goodwill to your audience, and for them to start associating that positivity with your brand. However, do this right and you will get sales. The main technical goal is to create engagement, conversation, and brand awareness. You can then use those audiences you build as retargeting audiences in the future.
4. Transition to an offer.
This is a careful step, because in order for this strategy to work long term where you build actual relationships with your customers, you must genuinely want to bring help and hope to your audience. No strings attached, and no bait and switches. However, once you get to know your audience eventually, you can carry that messaging into an offer to buy, a promotion, sale, or other more purchase-oriented marketing. The key here is to be paying attention to your audience and the issues causing them pain. Some crisis carry heavy weight where others carry less, so your sensitivity must be dialed in.
What Can Positivity Do for Your Brand?
The biggest takeaway here is this: the secret lies in cutting through the noise. While most businesses and news outlets are capitalizing on people’s pain and their fear, your business has the chance to stand out for good with a simple dose of positivity. Whether you’re reading this in the middle of the COVID-19 crisis, or down the road when things are back to “normal”, people desperately need hope in their day-to-day life. Get creative and find a way to give your audience what they really need, and you’ll watch your brand flourish as a result.