How To Get Someone To Love Your Idea

Six things to do when you’ve got a good one.

It’s one thing to have a good idea, but it’s another to convince someone else it’s good.

The ability to communicate your idea is what ultimately drives sales, sways opinions, and influences audiences no matter whether you express that idea in person, via email, or through content.

Here are a few ways to stack the deck in your favor…

1. Start With A Story

There’s no better way to capture attention than a story.

For thousands of years stories have served as vehicles to transport ideas and we’re hard-wired to pay attention to them.

A story can not only grab your audience’s attention, but hold it long enough for your idea to resonate on a deep, emotional level.

Stories motivate voluntary cooperation by activating specific chemicals in the brain — use this to your advantage.

Research has found if you share a story that creates tension, your audience shares the emotions of the characters in it, and is likely to mimick the feelings and behaviors of those characters after the story ends.

All the facts and figures in the world can’t compete with that.

You can read more about this concept here:

Why Your Brain Loves Good Storytelling

2. Get To The Point (especially in emails)

The less time it takes someone to “get” your idea, the more likely they embrace it.

Communicating your idea in as brief a way as possible shows respect for your audience’s time and increases the chances they consume your message.

A strong idea isn’t one which you can say a lot about, it’s one which you can convey WITHOUT saying a lot about.

This is particularly relevant when pitching an idea in an email.

You don’t need a lengthy intro, rambling backstories, or witty asides in your email — just get to the point.

Write an email, not a novella.

You can read more about this concept here:

The 3 Rules Of Writing Successful Pitch Emails

3. Focus On The Stakes, Not The Pain

There’s a common trope that the best way to sell something is to focus on your customer’s pain points, but that overlooks a key point:

Your audience may not feel the pain in this moment.

If you focus on the stakes rather than the pain, it becomes easier to convince someone to care about your idea.

For example, a CEO who doesn’t believe her company has a marketing problem is unlikely to fall in love with your new solution to it.

But if your pitch focuses on the stakes and makes clear the vulnerabilities she may not see, then you have a much better chance of capturing her interest.

When presenting an idea, don’t focus solely on what someone wants — it’s just as important to address what they fear.

You can read more about this concept here:

Pitch Stakes, Not Pain

4. Sell Results, Not Objectives

Nobody cares about your idea no matter how great it is, but everybody cares about the results it can generate.

Focus your pitch on the results your idea will produce — the benefits are more important than the features.

If your idea is designed to drive more sales, play up how many sales it will drive as opposed to the intricacies of how it will do so.

If your idea is designed to promote a non-profit’s cause and get people to take action, then emphasize the number of additional people who will take that action when the idea is implemented.

And when it comes to business ideas, keep in mind almost every idea will be judged on one of two criteria:

  1. How much money will this idea make us?
  2. How much money will this idea save us?

You better have a good answer to those questions if you hope to get a business to love your idea.

You can read more about this concept here:

How to write proposals that win 80% of deals

5. Simple. Relevant. Clear. Vulnerable. Unique.

These five words are the closest you’ll get to a cheat sheet when it comes to getting people to love your ideas.

The simpler your idea is to implement, the more likely it will be embraced because people hate friction.

The more relevant your idea is to someone’s wants and needs, the more likely they’ll be attracted to it because people care most about what impacts them.

The more clearly you explain your idea, the more likely someone will adopt it because people don’t like what they don’t understand.

The more vulnerable and human the presentation of your idea is, the more likely someone is to trust it.

The more unique your idea is, the more reason you give someone to choose it over the countless other ideas that come across their desk.

You can read more about these concepts here:

Five Ways To Increase Demand For What You Do

6. Don’t Be Afraid To Say “I Don’t Know”

There will be a moment in the presentation of your idea when you’ll get asked a question about it that you won’t be able to answer.

Your temptation will be to dodge the question, make up an answer that may not be true, or tell the person what you think they want to hear.

Don’t do that.

Instead, simply say, “I don’t know.”

Revealing you don’t have the answer to a question doesn’t reflect poorly on yourself or your idea — it shows people you’re honest and trustworthy.

Rather than try to bluff your way through it, thank the person for the good question, admit you don’t know the answer, and tell them you’d like to give it some thought and get back to them.

Nobody will look down on you for that — they’ll admire your honesty and it will reinforce that everything else you’ve told them is true.

Truth is powerful because there can be no love without it.

And after all, isn’t that what you’re trying to get for your idea in the first place?

You can read more about this concept here:

“I don’t know”

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