When people go to see a magician perform, they are aware that a show is happening. They’re happily paying to be deceived and they expect to see something that they’ve never witnessed before. If it’s a good show, people will talk for a day or two about how amazed they were by the magician’s illusions. If it’s lousy, they’ll talk for the rest of their life about the hackiest, corniest magician they’ve ever seen.
Consumers are aware of what’s happening when they encounter a marketing campaign, too. And a good marketing campaign doesn’t rely on tricks or illusions. If you can draw your audience’s attention to the right things at the right time, you might gain a new customer. If you use marketing ploys and empty guarantees, people will sniff it out and be turned off by your hacky marketing campaign. Your company will be illegitimate in their mind forever.
One thing that marketers and magicians have in common is the fact that they must have the ability to captivate an audience. Marketers can learn from magicians because during their act, magicians are in a constant struggle to maintain full control of their audience’s attention.
- Magicians know that you can only focus on one thing at a time. And they use it to their advantage. Unlike a magician’s routine, your marketing campaign should be free of distractions. You want your audience to maintain focus on your main selling point. Don’t bog down your message in an attempt to be flashy.
- People are drawn to the unexpected. When you watch a magician perform, you’ll tend to tune out expected movements. Any unnatural movements, however, will prompt you to focus harder in an attempt to discover the illusion. Marketers can use this fact to their advantage by thinking outside the box when they design an email or advertisement. Create an interesting subject line or an unorthodox image to catch your leads off-guard and make them focus.
- Magicians never stop talking when they are performing a trick. Whether they’re describing the difficulty of a trick or merely giving a play-by-play of their actions, magicians are great talkers. They do this to divert the audience’s attention from the hidden movements they are performing. For marketers, though, too much chatter is a mistake. You don’t want your customers to be distracted by long-winded copy. Know when to keep your pitch brief and allow your product to speak for itself.