Lessons Learned from My Father
If your father was anything like mine, he lived in the delicate balance between delivering on my mother’s threat, “Just wait until your father comes home!” and reaching out his strong arms for a tight squeeze when life didn’t go well.
My father was 6”3’ tall with a booming voice that attracted attention. Mostly I remember being embarrassing by his voice when I was a young girl.
I didn’t realize how difficult being so big was until I was in Los Angeles International Airport with my parents awaiting a flight to John F. Kennedy International Airport. Just before the airplane took off, a man entered the gate area who towered over my father. My dad's eyes lit up as he gave me the elbow and in a loud whisper he said, “That’s Kareem!” Before I had time to be embarrassed, I turned to see the basketball legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar bend down to shake hands and take photos with the children who had eagerly gathered around him. I smiled as I watched Kareem patiently engaging with the boys and girls around him because, like my dad (who was not a sports star), he understood that he had to be kinder and more open to strangers due to his physical size.
My father’s softer side bloomed after his grandsons were born and he became the captain of bath time. It was a softer side of my father that I don’t remember from when I was a child.
I share these few memories about my father because I want you to remember that people evolve over time. This observation is critical for your marketing because, not only do you change, but your audience changes also. Your goal is to create content and communications that support your prospects’ needs and persuade people to purchase from you.
You need to continue developing useful information for your audience even if your prospects don’t purchase from you in the short term. This matters because you don't know why prospects engaged with your content multiple times and then didn’t buy! The hard truth may be that they found a better or less expensive option that fulfills their need. It is also possible that they didn't make a purchase from you at all or they allowed someone else make the purchase decision.
Like your dad, you need to continue to be there for them and offer useful content until they’re ready to listen to you.
If you have a memory about your father that you’d like to share with us, feel free to comment below.
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