Preempting Perception


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Most marketing folks believe that perception is the Holy Grail when it comes to marketing our brands or products. We strive to create the perception of a winner – that product or services that buyers can’t live without – or so they believe.

But what happens when perception trumps reality? What happens when we’ve branded or rebranded based on our own perceptions and beliefs – and then find out our audiences already had a dramatically different perception?

That’s what happened to me last week. I put my house on the market and was having my first brokers open house. My agent Linda and I were standing on the deck with Tom, the agent of not one but two potential buyers. It was a gorgeous sunny morning, already bright at 9:00am.

That’s when Tom dropped the bomb. “The issue both of my client will have with this property is the lack of sunlight.” Say what? We’re standing in the bright sun, its bathing my entire property and it’s obvious that it will be for the next hours.

“But it’s sunny right now – and you can tell it’s going to be sunny through most of the rest of the day?” I queried.

“I can tell that -but their perception is that anything on this road is dark. So it’s going to be an uphill fight to get them to look at your property.”

Say what? This guy is standing in the sun, he’s admitted the property is sunny (and the website proves it) – yet he still thinks his buyers won’t be interested because of perception – based on the road I live on, not my property itself.

Head’s up all you marketers out there. Perception can trump your reality and stop you in your tracks. Unless you’ve thought ahead, listened to your buyers and altered that perception – before your product ever hits the market.

I knew people thought of this road as dark. I just didn’t mention it to my agent. Why? Because I knew my house was a sunny, bright spot. Anyone who came to see it would know that. But what about all those folks who don’t come see it?

My solution? The websites and MLS listing take that sunny issue head on – now. We preempted the perception. But it was after a set of potential buyers walked away. All because of a perception that I might have preempted – had I been thinking like a buyer.

Are there perceptions in your market that need to be preempted?

Image courtesy of Vaun Raymond

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Rebel Brown
Rebel Brown consistently challenges the status quo to deliver optimum solutions and high velocity growth for her clients. She combines the strategic expertise and tactical savvy of a global Corporate Strategy, Launch and Turnaround Expert, along with the leadership and motivational skills needed to get the job done.


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