Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash
Business,  Mind

Are you tired of the old paradigm of marketing?

Are you tired of the old paradigm of 'Pain' Marketing?

Here's how to market your business so you can do more good, than harm!

Here's how to market your business so you can do more good than harm!

I don’t know about you, but I am tired of being reminded how much pain I must be in from every marketing campaign that hits my news feed!! “But I’ve got a solution for you…” BUY MY THING!

 

Are you over that sales tactic too?

I’m sure you’ve heard the advice to “focus on the pain points” in your marketing of your business. It’s for sure an effective way to get people to buy your stuff… but is it ethical?

 

Is making more pain and suffering in the world WORTH IT for people to buy our stuff?

Is it right to poke at the vulnerabilities of our fellow humans?

 

One thing’s for sure, it works WELL! And you know why? Because it works off of an inherent, survival mechanism called ‘The Negative Bias’ (aka Positive Asymmetry).

I don’t know about you, but I am tired of being reminded how much pain I must be in from every marketing campaign that hits my news feed!! “But I’ve got a solution for you…” BUY MY THING!

 

Are you over that sales tactic too?

I’m sure you’ve heard the advice to “focus on the pain points” in your marketing of your business. It’s for sure an effective way to get people to buy your stuff… but is it ethical?

 

Is making more pain and suffering in the world WORTH IT for people to buy our stuff?

Is it right to poke at the vulnerabilities of our fellow humans?

 

One thing’s for sure, it works WELL! And you know why? Because it works off of an inherent, survival mechanism called ‘The Negative Bias’ (aka Positive Asymmetry).

What is the Negative Bias?

The negative bias is a hardwired tendency in us to feel the bad stuff more powerfully than the positive stuff!

 

Have you ever heard the saying: “Once Bitten, Twice Shy?”

That shame when something doesn’t work out and you’ve put your heart and soul into it and put it “out there” for the world to see?

 

Or that burning feeling when you’ve shown up 100% as you and been slated for what you believe or what you said?

 

Or have you had one ‘bad’ review or piece of feedback that you just can’t seem to shake?

 

That is the Negative Bias at work!

 

The Negative Bias is a natural pattern that underlies our basic motivation to avoid negative experiences. 

 

So we would rather do something to AVOID a bad thing than to GAIN something positive. AND our decisions are largely based on pain avoidance rather than welcoming positive experiences.

 

ARRGGGHH! What the actual hell?

Before we look at how you can get out of this, let’s drill down to how this affects the way we do business.

The negative bias is a hardwired tendency in us to feel the bad stuff more powerfully than the positive stuff!

 

Have you ever heard the saying: “Once Bitten, Twice Shy?”

That shame when something doesn’t work out and you’ve put your heart and soul into it and put it “out there” for the world to see?

 

Or that burning feeling when you’ve shown up 100% as you and been slated for what you believe or what you said?

 

Or have you had one ‘bad’ review or piece of feedback that you just can’t seem to shake?

 

That is the Negative Bias at work!

 

The Negative Bias is a natural pattern that underlies our basic motivation to avoid negative experiences. 

 

So we would rather do something to AVOID a bad thing than to GAIN something positive. AND our decisions are largely based on pain avoidance rather than welcoming positive experiences.

 

ARRGGGHH! What the actual hell?

Before we look at how you can get out of this, let’s drill down to how this affects the way we do business.

How the Negative Bias Affects us as Entrepreneurs

So what does that mean for us in business on a personal level? 

 

  • In short, it means we find it harder to bounce back from negative experiences related to our business.
  • We recall shitty experiences more readily AND clearer, than positive ones eg. remembering the last “bad” client experience you had vs remembering the positive, groundbreaking ones!
  • We react to the negative more strongly than the positive even if they are of equal par
  • We think about more negative stuff than we do positive! eg. what could go wrong/what went wrong, instead of what could go right/what went right!
  • We buy out of fear instead of pleasure (which leads us into the next point…)

 

So what does that mean for us in business on a personal level? 

 

  • In short, it means we find it harder to bounce back from negative experiences related to our business.
  • We recall shitty experiences more readily AND clearer, than positive ones eg. remembering the last “bad” client experience you had vs remembering the positive, groundbreaking ones!
  • We react to the negative more strongly than the positive even if they are of equal par
  • We think about more negative stuff than we do positive! eg. what could go wrong/what went wrong, instead of what could go right/what went right!
  • We buy out of fear instead of pleasure (which leads us into the next point…)

 

The Negative Bias as a Marketing Strategy

“What’s your client’s PAIN?”

 

If you haven’t heard this in one form or another during your business journey, you must be hiding under a rock! The idea of focussing on the pain and not the pleasure is tapping into that hardwired negative bias.

 

 

And… it works.

 

But is it ethical?

 

In a world where anxiety and depression are rising during the pandemic of Covid (and has been rising without this according to WHO) is it right to be focussing on pushing the pain points of our audience?

 

For the large majority of people who are unaware of what is being triggered, this tactic works 100%! Because it hits upon our natural tendency to avoid pain and discomfort.

 

But this also highlights how this strategy targets our vulnerable people – the ones who aren’t schooled up in ‘emotional intelligence’.

 

Emotional intelligence (or Emotional Quotient EQ) is basically the ability to understand and express your emotions well and develop empathy for another) is learnt at a young age (I would highly recommend reading Daniel Goleman’s Book: Emotional Intelligence). But so many of us are not taught how to handle our emotions well.

 

And more importantly to this blog, EQ is arguably a STRONGER factor of success in life and in business than IQ.

So coming back to ‘pain’ marketing – it focuses on those who aren’t aware of how their emotions rule their life. And if we take the idea that EQ is related to success, it is likely that these people are also part of our most vulnerable community.

 

So is it right to be honing in on those who have not yet built their emotional resilience?

Is it right to create more stress in those who already struggle with their emotions and other important factors of their life, to satisfy our desire for them to buy our thing?

EVEN IF it would help them? (Don’t worry we’ll talk about alternative strategies soon!).

 

My soul’s mission in the world is to create peace and harmony in the world by having everyone embrace their uniqueness! I do this through my business through soul-aligned branding, but as a soul mission, it permeates my entire business (and life).

So with that in mind, adding more fear and more pain to the world, through marketing that focuses on agitating our client’s problems is not in alignment with what I want to create!

 

And I ask you to think carefully now… Is this old way of “pain” marketing in alignment with what YOU want to create in the world?
Are you comfortable with creating more pain as a way to get people to buy your stuff?

 

I am feeling a new paradigm of business emerging and it doesn’t buy into the fear-mongering marketing tactics that we have been taught.

 

“What’s your client’s PAIN?”

 

If you haven’t heard this in one form or another during your business journey, you must be hiding under a rock! The idea of focussing on the pain and not the pleasure is tapping into that hardwired negative bias.

 

 

And… it works.

 

But is it ethical?

 

In a world where anxiety and depression are rising during the pandemic of Covid (and has been rising without this according to WHO) is it right to be focussing on pushing the pain points of our audience?

 

For the large majority of people who are unaware of what is being triggered, this tactic works 100%! Because it hits upon our natural tendency to avoid pain and discomfort.

 

But this also highlights how this strategy targets our vulnerable people – the ones who aren’t schooled up in ‘emotional intelligence’.

 

Emotional intelligence (or Emotional Quotient EQ) is basically the ability to understand and express your emotions well and develop empathy for another) is learnt at a young age (I would highly recommend reading Daniel Goleman’s Book: Emotional Intelligence). But so many of us are not taught how to handle our emotions well.

 

And more importantly to this blog, EQ is arguably a STRONGER factor of success in life and in business than IQ.

So coming back to ‘pain’ marketing – it focuses on those who aren’t aware of how their emotions rule their life. And if we take the idea that EQ is related to success, it is likely that these people are also part of our most vulnerable community.

 

So is it right to be honing in on those who have not yet built their emotional resilience?

Is it right to create more stress in those who already struggle with their emotions and other important factors of their life, to satisfy our desire for them to buy our thing?

EVEN IF it would help them? (Don’t worry we’ll talk about alternative strategies soon!).

 

My soul’s mission in the world is to create peace and harmony in the world by having everyone embrace their uniqueness! I do this through my business through soul-aligned branding, but as a soul mission, it permeates my entire business (and life).

So with that in mind, adding more fear and more pain to the world, through marketing that focuses on agitating our client’s problems is not in alignment with what I want to create!

 

And I ask you to think carefully now… Is this old way of “pain” marketing in alignment with what YOU want to create in the world?
Are you comfortable with creating more pain as a way to get people to buy your stuff?

 

I am feeling a new paradigm of business emerging and it doesn’t buy into the fear-mongering marketing tactics that we have been taught.

 

The New Paradigm of Marketing

When we know that pain-marketing works so well, it can be scary to think of an alternative but there is!

 

The new way of marketing is a gentler, more compassionate approach that acknowledges the vulnerabilities of our audience (because your pain/fear IS a great indicator of areas of growth) but doesn’t poke at it with a hot stick!

 

It’s about building trusting, loyal relationships that are fuelled by deep, real conversation, instead of quick sales pages or posts that get you in such a fearful state that you don’t want to miss out!

The new paradigm, educates our audience first so that we can:

 

  • Get away from the fearful emotional playground
  • Highlight the POTENTIAL of our clients and 
  • Allow them to make decisions from a place of inspiration and empowerment!

Yes, this may take longer than your traditional pain-driven marketing.

 

Yes, you may have fewer audience members who “jump on” your offers.

But…

Doesn’t it feel so much more real and in integrity?

 

And guaranteed those people who do choose to follow you and purchase from you will be loyal and trusting, instead of stragglers on the outskirts, who don’t really care about what you have to say!

 

This new paradigm may not get you the millions of followers, but you will have a more genuine authentic and connected audience who love who you are, what you do and how you do biz!

When we know that pain-marketing works so well, it can be scary to think of an alternative but there is!

 

The new way of marketing is a gentler, more compassionate approach that acknowledges the vulnerabilities of our audience (because your pain/fear IS a great indicator of areas of growth) but doesn’t poke at it with a hot stick!

 

It’s about building trusting, loyal relationships that are fuelled by deep, real conversation, instead of quick sales pages or posts that get you in such a fearful state that you don’t want to miss out!

The new paradigm, educates our audience first so that we can:

 

  • Get away from the fearful emotional playground
  • Highlight the POTENTIAL of our clients and 
  • Allow them to make decisions from a place of inspiration and empowerment!

Yes, this may take longer than your traditional pain-driven marketing.

 

Yes, you may have fewer audience members who “jump on” your offers.

But…

Doesn’t it feel so much more real and in integrity?

 

And guaranteed those people who do choose to follow you and purchase from you will be loyal and trusting, instead of stragglers on the outskirts, who don’t really care about what you have to say!

 

This new paradigm may not get you the millions of followers, but you will have a more genuine authentic and connected audience who love who you are, what you do and how you do biz!

So, How Do I Get Out of the Negative Bias Trap & Grow My Business In the New Paradigm?

The first step, is always to work from the inside out. That is – start with you first!

 

On a personal level, become aware of how the Negative Bias rules your life and make a firm decision that you are going to EVOLVE from that cave-woman mentality to an aware, conscious individual!

 

  • Don’t let your negative thoughts rule your world! Your mind is not YOU who holds limitless potential and worthiness.
  • Don’t make decisions based on avoidance of fear/pain. With ANYTHING! Especially business habits (because we’re going to look at those soon!)
  • Don’t be motivated by what you will lose if you don’t, rather be motivated by what you gain if you do!

Reframing, awareness of your thoughts, recalling of positive experiences and connecting in to your soul-aligned mission, all help to retrain your brain to think more positively and move away from this dated survival mechanism!

 

On a business level here are a few ways to move into this new way of “compassionate” marketing:

  • Review your current content and offers. Do they agitate the pain? Do they sell with FOMO as a tactic? Ask yourself how you can address the pain in a way that makes your client feel heard, but focus more on the pleasure that your client will get from working with you? How can you trust more that the right people will come to work with you at the right time, rather than pressuring them from a place of time sensitive “bonuses” or FOMO?
 
  • Highlight the wins. How can you highlight the “WINS” from your work to attract more clients? Grab your recent testimonials and use them in your copy is just one way.
 
  • Prepare for a (perhaps?) longer, but more connected, journey. This isn’t about making quick sales with lots of people. It’s about working at a slower pace that allows deeper connection. So look at how your pricing can reflect this slower pace (price rise time?) so you can still hit your financial goals and consider some passive income avenues that can work in the background as you grow your loyal audience.
 
  • Educate your audience! As this is a new way of marketing, talk about it! Talk about why you are choosing this way instead of the old pain strategies! Get your audience on board and they will love you for it!

So, are your ready to step into this new way of navigating your business (and your life)?
I sure am!

 

Let me know how you’re going to start moving in this direction or if you have any other view on this subject, by commenting below!

The first step, is always to work from the inside out. That is – start with you first!

 

On a personal level, become aware of how the Negative Bias rules your life and make a firm decision that you are going to EVOLVE from that cave-woman mentality to an aware, conscious individual!

 

  • Don’t let your negative thoughts rule your world! Your mind is not YOU who holds limitless potential and worthiness.
  • Don’t make decisions based on avoidance of fear/pain. With ANYTHING! Especially business habits (because we’re going to look at those soon!)
  • Don’t be motivated by what you will lose if you don’t, rather be motivated by what you gain if you do!

Reframing, awareness of your thoughts, recalling of positive experiences and connecting in to your soul-aligned mission, all help to retrain your brain to think more positively and move away from this dated survival mechanism!

 

On a business level here are a few ways to move into this new way of “compassionate” marketing:

  • Review your current content and offers. Do they agitate the pain? Do they sell with FOMO as a tactic? Ask yourself how you can address the pain in a way that makes your client feel heard, but focus more on the pleasure that your client will get from working with you? How can you trust more that the right people will come to work with you at the right time, rather than pressuring them from a place of time sensitive “bonuses” or FOMO?
 
  • Highlight the wins. How can you highlight the “WINS” from your work to attract more clients? Grab your recent testimonials and use them in your copy is just one way.
 
  • Prepare for a (perhaps?) longer, but more connected, journey. This isn’t about making quick sales with lots of people. It’s about working at a slower pace that allows deeper connection. So look at how your pricing can reflect this slower pace (price rise time?) so you can still hit your financial goals and consider some passive income avenues that can work in the background as you grow your loyal audience.
 
  • Educate your audience! As this is a new way of marketing, talk about it! Talk about why you are choosing this way instead of the old pain strategies! Get your audience on board and they will love you for it!

So, are your ready to step into this new way of navigating your business (and your life)?
I sure am!

 

Let me know how you’re going to start moving in this direction or if you have any other view on this subject, by commenting below!

Nik Chung Authentic Branding & Visibility Coach
Dear Adventurer,
Please find some questions below to ponder or to journal to further your exploration of this topic:
 
  • Where do you see the negative bias playing out in your personal life and business life?
  • Where do you see the negative bias playing a role in your business strategy?
  • Does your current marketing strategy feel aligned or not?  Why?
  • How can you create a strategy to sell that feels more aligned to what you want to create in the world?

Want to explore this more?

Want to explore this more?

Book in your free 30min Clarity Session with me & let's go deeper!

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