I have to admit, we weren’t always great at website design. In the early days we learned a lot and eventually we got better. That was 15 years ago. These days, we look back on those first few sites that we built and are surprised how far we’ve come.
Why would I tell you that? Who in their right mind would tell you that they really messed up. Most marketing copy is filled with bragging and makes it appear that they’re perfect. So then why would I tell you that we made some colossal mistakes? Believe it or not, it builds trust. You’re not gullible enough to believe that we’ve never messed up. So if I were to tell you that we’ve been doing this for 15 years and have never had a dissatisfied client, you’d immediately become skeptical and think, “This guy’s a liar.” You’d lose respect and be less likely to believe me when I tell you something that’s true. But, you see, then you make what are called damaging admissions, and people think to themselves, “Hey, this guy is a straight-shooter. He’s being truthful” and they’re more likely to trust me and believe the other things that I say.
Great marketing is all about building rapport. It’s not about pushing your message on someone until they finally give in and buy your product. It’s about building rapport and establishing trust so that they’re willing to buy your product without any gimmicks or arm-twisting.
So, next time you’re about to start bragging about how great your product is, think instead of making a damaging admission and telling your readers about how you made some mistakes but have corrected the situation. Hope that helps.