I AM [SHER]LOCKED
Some of you may recognize the headline. If you’re a fan of the U.K. TV series, “Sherlock,” then you’ll remember it was the code used to unlock a woman’s mobile phone, which held secrets that could topple the British government.
The one woman who almost managed to outwit Sherlock Holmes and intrigue his heart. (As far as a woman could intrigue a man with the mind of a computer.) She was gorgeous, scandalous (a dominatrix, of all things), and very, very smart. She finally thought she had out-maneuvered Sherlock and his brother Mycroft. But in the end, Sherlock finally figured out that her “game” of pretending to care for him really wasn’t a game, after all. The lock code on her phone just happened to be his name. Well done, Holmes!
So before I start really going off the deep-end on Sherlock Holmes (The Cowboy and I have already finished the season and now are watching the 1954 TV series, “Sherlock Holmes” with Ronald Howard), I’ll zip us into what I’ve learned about the TV version of Sherlock Holmes.
He noticed everything.
This may not seem like such an eye-opener. Most people realize the character of Sherlock Holmes has this uncanny knack for being able to identify a person’s line of work, whether they have one or two dogs, or even if they’re secretly a smoker— all by his powerful gift for deductive reasoning.
So what does this mean for you and your business?
Become Sherlock Holmes.
The trait: Be curious about your customers. Notice everything you can about them.
When was the last time you sat down and really paid attention to what your last client had to say? What did they like about what you did for them? What were they looking for? Did they find it with you? Were they happy after receiving it and if so, did you get the details?
One of the smartest decisions I made years ago when I was a relationship coach for single women over 40 was giving free workshops. I shared the information and expertise I had for free and in exchange, I became their student.
I absorbed everything I could about their likes, dislikes, hopes, dreams, fears, victories, and failures. I watched their faces when they talked about their last date. I asked what was the toughest thing about dating as an older woman (knowing where to look for dates or having the time to look for potential dates), and how open they were to trying new things. I constantly came up with more questions, transforming a dry delivery of information into a lively discussion of dating as middle-aged women.
From those times of observation, I then developed information products and a fee-based seminar series. And all of it was based on what I learned during those free workshops. Here are some tips:
No matter where you live, you most likely have a public library in town.
Public libraries have meetings rooms you can use for free, as long as you don’t sell anything during your presentation. Many libraries have programs, paying a small stipend to teachers and trainers.
Check to see if your library has such programs and if not, ask to reserve a room, anyway.
You can say you’re testing your presentation skills and need an audience. (Which is true. We all need to continue practicing our presentation skills.)
Tell the library that you’d like to pull in some of their books on the subject.
They may even do that for you! But you can easily work it out. Librarians love sharing information and can often find books you didn’t even know existed.
Promote your free workshop everywhere you can: newspapers will print events in their event section, and use social media to reach out to those in your city.
Just make sure to pass the press release to the library for approval. (I got in some hot water when one newspaper rejected my title and came up with their own: “Find a Husband at the Library.”) Not my fault but I had to do some serious tap-dancing for the branch manager!
The best way to observe anything is in person, with your own eyes. Trying to gather this type of information from the Internet is like wrapping a bandana over your eyes and covering your ears with earmuffs. You’ll only get a fraction of your target audience’s motivators.
Meanwhile, once you have a few workshops under your belt, you’ll be amazed by how much more insight you now have into your target customer’s emotional triggers.
And that’s what you want to use in your copy.
Have your attendees fill out a rating sheet right after your workshop. Such input is like gold for your marketing strategy. Use their own words to describe your services and products. It will now resonate with your target customer because it will have (obviously) the “ring of truth” for them.
You don’t need to carry a magnifying glass with you at these events or wear a deerstalker cap. Just bring your beautiful self and deliver quality, primo info your prospect can use. And then watch and listen.
You’ll soon be able to deduce exactly what makes your customer tick.