How to Affect Your Audience’s Beliefs

“Those who believe without reason cannot be convinced by reason.”

—James Randi

I wish I were the logical person I would like to think I am, but I’m not. I do and think things every day (and make important decisions) for what — in the cold light of logic — are simply quite silly. We believe “without reason.”

And I’m not alone. You do this, too. We all do.

People make decisions based on emotion, and then use logic to justify those decisions. One of the key differences between a good marketer and a not-so-good marketer is that realization.

Now that you know it, what are you going to do about it? I have a couple of suggestions.

First, realize that the value you provide in teaching isn’t wholly dependent on the information you give your audience. They do value that, but… they can, frankly, get that anywhere.

They value you because they feel a connection with you. They value you because you are interesting and even (gasp!) entertaining. They value you because you do and say things they wish they could do. They value you because you make things make sense.

My second suggestion is that you start communicating with your audience more frequently, and with more stories. Stories that document what you’re doing, stories that teach and promote the opinions, values, and actions you endorse, and stories that shame the “bad” behavior of people outside of your audience (or even the lowest-quality audience members).