A couple years ago I sent my daughter – a 2-year-old at the time – down a huge slide by herself. I figured with a little push she’d realize how much fun it is to cruise recklessly down the curvy slope. I was wrong, and the tears and screams alerted all the other parents in the playground of my irresponsible parenting techniques.
In the school of parenting I’m learning when to push and when to pull. You can – and sometimes must – force your kid to do what you tell them. Far better, though, to earn their trust, understand where they’re at, and motivate them to want to launch themselves down a slide (when they’re old enough, of course).
Push and pull are important to learn in advertising as well. You can push your message to the masses with email blasts, mailbox-filling flyers, and any intrusive method you like. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it’s necessary.
Far better, though, to earn a person’s trust, gain the permission to speak, and motivate them to want to join your tribe, go to your website, or buy your product.