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The Power of Fascination and Content Marketing

The first keynote session of the morning at Content Marketing World was from Sally Hogshead, author of Fascinate: Your 7 Triggers to Persuasion and Captivation. And fascinate us she did.

Sally spoke about fascination, which she defined as an intense, emotional focus. And, she explained that each of us has a personality that is hard-wired to fascinate.

“You don’t learn how to be fascinating. You unlearn how to be boring.”

The importance of fascination

Sally peppered the audience with examples of companies that fascinate, and two benefits of achieving this level of interaction became clear: Companies that fascinate can charge more for their products, and they have more repeat customers.

She then demonstrated this concept by comparing how you market your service with using an online dating service. When you think about it, the premise is the same: You need to attract your prospect, build a relationship, and make the sale. On, there are 26 million profiles, so you also really need to find ways to stand out.

Making things even more complicated is that people are constantly distracted. Sally talked about how the average attention span is only nine seconds. Of course, commitment can’t happen in nine seconds, but introductions can.

7 ways to fascinate

Sally talked about seven ways to fascinate, which she calls triggers:

  • Power – Take command
  • Passion – Attract with emotion
  • Mystique – Arouse curiosity
  • Prestige – Increase respect
  • Alarm – Create urgency
  • Rebellion – Change the game
  • Trust – Build loyalty

Patricia Redsicker has a good description of each of these seven fascination triggers on her blog, WorldView Editing.

She then went on to talk about common problems we all face in marketing, and gave examples of how various fascination triggers can be used to solve these issues.

For instance, if you need to increase the price or perceived value of your product, the fascination trigger you want to apply is that of prestige. You want to invent the ultimate experience for someone. She gave a few examples of how some hotels are doing this:

  • The Benjamin Hotel in New York provides a pillow menu for all guests.
  • The W Hotel in New York has a room service menu for pets.
  • The Iron Horse Hotel has a VIP sign for the customers who check in with their dogs.

So what do you do if your customers aren’t loyal? You need to fascinate them with trust. As Sally explains, you don’t need to be the best to be trusted, but you need to be consistent, and you need to be found.

The presentation was a fantastic start to Content Marketing World and got rave reviews from the crowd. If you were there, what else fascinated you?