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Using NAKED to Get What You Want

Using NAKED to Get What You Want


    We all have goals, ambitions, and desires.

    In other words, we all want things.

    Maybe we want them for ourselves, maybe we want them for our loved ones, and maybe we want them for our society, or the entire world.

    Whatever it happens to be, we all want something.

    And usually, we need other people to help us or cooperate with us in order to get those things.

    The question is, how do we get them to help out? How do we get them to stop what they’re doing, care about what we’re describing, and get what you want?

    Get What You Want: The Naked Truth

    Hardly anyone will help you just for the sake of helping you; there needs to be something in it for them.

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    This isn’t wrong, and it isn’t unkind, it’s just human nature. Strangers don’t typically help strangers unless there’s a benefit to be had.

    That benefit could be an outcome that they desire, information or knowledge they want, or they could have some kind of personal interest in your success.

    There are occasional altruistic, kind-hearted exceptions, but for the most part, getting someone to take an action that you want them to take can be a challenge. The thing is, though, that there are many occasions when we need to do it; from shopping, to our social lives, with our families, and with our businesses.

    Does this sound a little sleazy to you?

    Well, it certainly can be, but it doesn’t have to be, and really, it SHOULDN’T be.

    So before I get into the nitty gritty of how to convince people that they want what you want, let’s talk a little bit about how NOT to do it…

    Not About Pick-up Artistry or Manipulation

    If you got the impression that you have to trick people into thinking that they want what you want, you got it wrong.

    This is a common misconception in the world of pick-up artistry – pick up artists help people justify doing things that they feel like, but don’t really want, and will probably regret in the morning.

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    This is completely unsustainable in the context of any serious relationship. We’ve all that that friend who always had their hand out – for your time, your advice, even your money, and never returned the favor, or even made any pretense of doing so! It may take a while, but sooner or later you’re going to cut that friend loose!

    You’ve had that experience, haven’t you? Maybe not just with a friend, but in another context?

    We’ll use the example of a purchase (to avoid dredging up last Thanksgiving’s family theater!):

    Think about a time when you hemmed and hawed and finally bought something, maybe against your better judgment, and then learned that it was really, really a mistake. When you went to the snake-oil salesman who convinced you to buy in the first place – they barely took the time to listen to you.

    Did you feel alienated? Angry? Disgusted? Hurt?

    The same feelings crop up, albeit sometimes more slowly and under the radar in less formal relationships; maybe the Homer Simpson-esque neighbor who forever borrows your lawn mower, but lets his dog do its business on your front yard. Someone who uses and takes advantage of the people in their lives is a swindler, the same way the snake-oil salesman and the pick-up artist are.

    No one wants to help a swindler, and you’ll find yourself going it alone sooner than you’d imagine if you manipulate and abuse people.

    All About Seduction and Persuasion

    Seduction and persuasion are a dance – they happen when two people arrive together at a common goal.

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    If you want to seduce and persuade, you have to understand why something is good for you, but also why it’s good for them.

    And I’m not talking in terms of the warm fuzzies someone will get from helping you out (although never underestimate the power of a warm fuzzy); I’m talking about the real, solid benefits a person can get from being able to align their wants and needs with yours. There are several steps to powerful persuasion:

    • Spending time developing a relationship with people first.
    • Listening to what they say and responding honestly.
    • Backing off when you’re goals aren’t aligned – with no hard feelings.
    • And once you get what you want, whether it’s a ride to the mall or a donation to your charity, you take the time to thank the person who helped you.

    You see, seduction and persuasion aren’t always bad – they can be fantastic when the process is transparent. Seduction, when employed correctly, is a pleasure for all parties involved.  Persuasion is the same – it’s the method by which you encourage someone to make a decision that will be good for you both.

    Sexy to You isn’t Sexy to Me!

    What’s sexy and seductive to me, after all, may not be what’s sexy and seductive to you. People respond to different things – that’s what makes the world such a wonderful, fascinating place, and part of what makes human relationships so exciting and rewarding.

    There are “best practices” to be sure: honesty, listening, empathy, etc. — but there is no one best way to engage in the dance of seduction and persuasion.

    The first step in starting the dance of seductive persuasion is getting to know the person you want something from – what makes them tick, what they need and what they value.

    In business, you do this by creating a comprehensive customer profile – a crib sheet on the heart of your ideal customer. Once you know what makes that person tick, you can use the information to give them what they want, when they want it.

    In life, in your relationships, it’s more subtle. You have to spend time thinking about what motivates the person you want something from.

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    If you’re looking for donations to a food bank, you might appeal to a neighbor’s sense of civic duty. You know they have one because they run the flag up every day, make a point of being polite and friendly to passersby, and scrupulously bring out the recycling on the appointed day at the appointed hour.

    Every person has different things that motivate them, and if you take the time to figure out what those things are, and then frame your request in that light, your chances of success are much, much higher.

    And the person you wanted something from will be likely to thank you for the opportunity.

    Now that doesn’t sound too sleazy, does it?

    I’ve done my best to compile this idea into a framework, in a way that is both fun and informative. I call it the Naked Marketing Manifesto, and it will help you identify those motivators in the people you deal with, and then tailor your activities with them so that you end up with happy, loyal, long-term relationships – and not broke and alone and despised by everyone you used to be friends with.

    (Photo credit: Truth Road Sign via Shutterstock)

    Danny Iny (@DannyIny) is the co-founder of Firepole Marketing, the “Freddy Krueger of Blogging”, and the co-author (with Guy Kawasaki, Brian Clark, and many others) of Engagement from Scratch! (available on Amazon, or as a free download). The latest and greatest thing you can get from him (for free, of course) is his Naked Marketing Manifesto, about marketing that really works!

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    Last Updated on July 17, 2019

    The Science of Setting Goals (And How It Affects Your Brain)

    The Science of Setting Goals (And How It Affects Your Brain)

    What happens in our heads when we set goals?

    Apparently a lot more than you’d think.

    Goal setting isn’t quite so simple as deciding on the things you’d like to accomplish and working towards them.

    According to the research of psychologists, neurologists, and other scientists, setting a goal invests ourselves into the target as if we’d already accomplished it. That is, by setting something as a goal, however small or large, however near or far in the future, a part of our brain believes that desired outcome is an essential part of who we are – setting up the conditions that drive us to work towards the goals to fulfill the brain’s self-image.

    Apparently, the brain cannot distinguish between things we want and things we have. Neurologically, then, our brains treat the failure to achieve our goal the same way as it treats the loss of a valued possession. And up until the moment, the goal is achieved, we have failed to achieve it, setting up a constant tension that the brain seeks to resolve.

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    Ideally, this tension is resolved by driving us towards accomplishment. In many cases, though, the brain simply responds to the loss, causing us to feel fear, anxiety, even anguish, depending on the value of the as-yet-unattained goal.

    Love, Loss, Dopamine, and Our Dreams

    The brains functions are carried out by a stew of chemicals called neurotransmitters. You’ve probably heard of serotonin, which plays a key role in our emotional life – most of the effective anti-depressant medications on the market are serotonin reuptake inhibitors, meaning they regulate serotonin levels in the brain leading to more stable moods.

    Somewhat less well-known is another neurotransmitter, dopamine. Among other things, dopamine acts as a motivator, creating a sensation of pleasure when the brain is stimulated by achievement. Dopamine is also involved in maintaining attention – some forms of ADHD are linked to irregular responses to dopamine.[1]

    So dopamine plays a key role in keeping us focused on our goals and motivating us to attain them, rewarding our attention and achievement by elevating our mood. That is, we feel good when we work towards our goals.

    Dopamine is related to wanting – to desire. The attainment of the object of our desire releases dopamine into our brains and we feel good. Conversely, the frustration of our desires starves us of dopamine, causing anxiety and fear.

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    One of the greatest desires is romantic love – the long-lasting, “till death do us part” kind. It’s no surprise, then, that romantic love is sustained, at least in part, through the constant flow of dopamine released in the presence – real or imagined – of our true love. Loss of romantic love cuts off that supply of dopamine, which is why it feels like you’re dying – your brain responds by triggering all sorts of anxiety-related responses.

    Herein lies obsession, as we go to ever-increasing lengths in search of that dopamine reward. Stalking specialists warn against any kind of contact with a stalker, positive or negative, because any response at all triggers that reward mechanism. If you let the phone ring 50 times and finally pick up on the 51st ring to tell your stalker off, your stalker gets his or her reward, and learns that all s/he has to do is wait for the phone to ring 51 times.

    Romantic love isn’t the only kind of desire that can create this kind of dopamine addiction, though – as Captain Ahab (from Moby Dick) knew well, any suitably important goal can become an obsession once the mind has established ownership.

    The Neurology of Ownership

    Ownership turns out to be about a lot more than just legal rights. When we own something, we invest a part of ourselves into it – it becomes an extension of ourselves.

    In a famous experiment at Cornell University, researchers gave students school logo coffee mugs, and then offered to trade them chocolate bars for the mugs. Very few were willing to make the trade, no matter how much they professed to like chocolate. Big deal, right? Maybe they just really liked those mugs![2]

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    But when they reversed the experiment, handing out chocolate and then offering to trade mugs for the candy, they found that now, few students were all that interested in the mugs. Apparently the key thing about the mugs or the chocolate wasn’t whether students valued whatever they had in their possession, but simply that they had it in their possession.

    This phenomenon is called the “endowment effect”. In a nutshell, the endowment effect occurs when we take ownership of an object (or idea, or person); in becoming “ours” it becomes integrated with our sense of identity, making us reluctant to part with it (losing it is seen as a loss, which triggers that dopamine shut-off I discussed above).

    Interestingly, researchers have found that the endowment effect doesn’t require actual ownership or even possession to come into play. In fact, it’s enough to have a reasonable expectation of future possession for us to start thinking of something as a part of us – as jilted lovers, gambling losers, and 7-year olds denied a toy at the store have all experienced.

    The Upshot for Goal-Setters

    So what does all this mean for would-be achievers?

    On one hand, it’s a warning against setting unreasonable goals. The bigger the potential for positive growth a goal has, the more anxiety and stress your brain is going to create around it’s non-achievement.

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    It also suggests that the common wisdom to limit your goals to a small number of reasonable, attainable objectives is good advice. The more goals you have, the more ends your brain thinks it “owns” and therefore the more grief and fear the absence of those ends is going to cause you.

    On a more positive note, the fact that the brain rewards our attentiveness by releasing dopamine means that our brain is working with us to direct us to achievement. Paying attention to your goals feels good, encouraging us to spend more time doing it. This may be why outcome visualization — a favorite technique of self-help gurus involving imagining yourself having completed your objectives — has such a poor track record in clinical studies. It effectively tricks our brain into rewarding us for achieving our goals even though we haven’t done it yet!

    But ultimately, our brain wants us to achieve our goals, so that it’s a sense of who we are that can be fulfilled. And that’s pretty good news!

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    Featured photo credit: Alexa Williams via unsplash.com

    Reference

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