Sunday, March 01, 2009

Leaders Learning What Sells: Spirituality has trumped Sex

Contagious Leaders Look Out! Beware in boardrooms everywhere and pay attention to the new marketing and sales buzz. In the coming years, your ad plans may change and the way you "sell" your ideas may change as well.

Leaders, whether of a business, an industry, or even the voices in your head...ha!... often want to know how to sell an idea or product. Selling is a primary revenue driver and there's new news on the horizon. In the ad and media world, sex has been trumped as the primary sales vehicle by... spirituality.

Now, let's be clear - selling sex can be a dicey topic, but it comes out in things like image, the models you choose for an ad, and person you send in to close the deal for your next big client. It isn't all tawdry and for years it has been the reality of what "sells" stuff the most. Studies are now showing and experts are clear that spirituality has more selling power.

Check out these resources to see how "getting more out of life" and "finding your purpose", as well as "feeling fulfilled" via religion or other spiritual sources is becoming a major selling point:
http://www.managementtoday.co.uk/search/article/550578/spirituality-sells/
http://www.iamnext.com/spirituality/metrospirituality.html

There are many ways one could look at the shift, but a key question that this change in trends brings about is how are you selling your ideas to those you lead and those you serve. Contagious Leaders already focus on the people they lead, but now maybe it's time to incorporate more focus how those people feel. Are they connected, feeling fulfilled, and clear on their purpose?

1 comment:

stefani_ceballos said...

After reading these articles, I am not sure that what is actually selling these products is religion or even spirituality.

In many cases, I think that these campaigns harken back to the time tested theory that people make the decision to buy based on how that product can affect their lives. I think that we are seeing a shift towards buzz words like purity, and fulfillment because advertisers realize that our priorities are shifting - as individuals and as a scociety - to not be so materially driven; and let's face it, we feel better about ourselves when we know that we are being "socially responsible" or "going green".

I think that introducing religion or spirituality into an ad campaign can be a slippery slope. In that by doing so, you limit your audience even further and in some cases risk turning a certain segment of society off, just based on the initial messaging.

For the most part, I think that the majority of consumers want to believe that they are thoughtful, responsible consumers and it is nice to have a larger variety of products out there to choose from, But it is possible to be those things and not necessarily be religious or spiritual. Finally, if I am not religious or even sprirtual, does that mean that I am excluded from that company's desired demographic?

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