We all see the world through our own eyes and the filters of our own experiences and environment … that’s natural
But that’s not what our customers are seeing.
Our customers are on their own journeys and they have their own reasons for behaving the way they do.
If we are unable to understand, deeply, what drives our customers we will never create the connection with them necessary for them to trust that we are selling them products and services that are valuable to them.
Jeffrey Shaw teaches businesses how to connect more deeply with their customers. He tells us some great stories that show what it is we can do to use the language that our clients understand.
Jeffrey Shaw is host of the popular business podcast Creative Warriors, a featured storyteller on The Moth, and a nationally acclaimed keynote speaker at creative and business conferences. For more than three decades, Jeffrey has been one of the most sought-after portrait photographers in the U.S. His portraits have appeared on the Oprah Show, in People magazine, O Magazine, and others.
Having a keen eye isn’t just for what one sees, but also for what one senses. Jeffrey Shaw, a.k.a. the Lingo Guy, uses this honed intuition developed as a photographer to teach entrepreneurs how to attract their ideal customers by speaking their Secret Language. He’s the author of the book, LINGO: Discover Your Ideal Customer’s Secret Language and Make Your Business Irresistible.
Jeffrey is the father of three adult children and resides with his two dogs in Miami Beach.
IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL LEARN:
The 5 emotional triggers that will help your ideal client know that you are speaking their lingo:
- You have to understand their Perspective
- Familiarity – We are innately drawn to things that are familiar to us
- Style – we choose art, products, and services based on the style that we like
- Pricing Psychology – pricing creates perception. Are you high-end or affordable?
- Words – speak to them using their words
- LINGO: Discover Your Ideal Customer’s Secret Language and Make Your Business Irresistible
- Jeffrey’s quick website review http://jeffreyshaw.pages.ontraport.net/websitereviewapplication
You can also subscribe to this podcast on our Youtube channel.
Brad Dobson: Brad Dobson.
Minette Riordan: Brad Dobson, I’m flow if you haven’t guessed and he’s structure.
Brad Dobson: That’s me.
Minette Riordan: It is so true, but some kind of roles flip.
Brad Dobson: Yeah, yeah, yeah. I get into my creative flow modes as well, that’s for sure.
Minette Riordan: Yeah, and then we meet other awesome creatives like our guests today who also loved that space between Structure and Flow and know that it takes both to get business going. So today we are so excited to bring you Jeffrey Shaw. Welcome Jeffrey.
Brad Dobson: Welcome.
Jeffrey Shaw: Well, thank you. I’m thrilled to be here with you now.
Minette Riordan: We are Super excited to have you on this show, so we want to tell you a little bit about Jeffrey and then have him share more, but Jeffrey and I were recently connected by an amazing woman who was also a guest on our show name, Ellen Rogin. We had a great conversation about generosity, kindness, and productivity. It was a really good conversation. So I know this one’s going to be awesome as well, but Jeffrey is the author of a book, I’m in the process of reading called The Lingo. Let me make sure I get the subtitle right, discover your ideal customers secret language, and make your business irresistible. And I love this concept, it reminds me a little bit of Seth Goden, but in a language I think that people get like I think that you personally model so beautifully Jeffrey, getting your entrepreneurs lingo, so I’d love to hear more about your journey, how you got to where you are and what are you excited about right now in your business?
Jeffrey Shaw: Right now I’m excited to talk to you guys. So yeah. It’s not a long shot, right? I get the lingo of the people I wrote the book for because I’ve lived the journey, right? We lived the journey of a creative entrepreneur my entire life. Literally I’ve never received a paycheck from anyone. I’ve never had a … I know it didn’t strike me how odd that was until recently. I’m now 54 years old and I literally have never had anybody write me a paycheck.
Minette Riordan: Wow. Not even through high school and university.
Jeffrey Shaw: No. I sold eggs door to door when I was to start at 14 years old. That was my first entrepreneurial venture, because I lived in the country and one thing we had an abundance of were chickens and eggs and it was a couple hours north of New York City and people were moving out to the suburb from New York City and they thought it was really cool to buy this is before farm raised eggs, right by literally had farm raised eggs and they thought it was cool to buy eggs.
Jeffrey Shaw: I sold eggs door to door from the age of 14 and have never looked back. So throughout my career I’ve sold eggs and I never saw him Christmas cards door to door. And by the age of 20, actually 19, I went off to photography school and by age 20 it went into the business of a portrait photography. By the age of 20. And I still do that to a limited degree now. But 34 years later, still doing a little bit, but prior to several years ago, it was my entire mainstay and I in particular, I’ve photographed, I did family portraits for very affluent families. And as I often say, I basically was in the business of selling something nobody needed to the hardest market in the world. Right? And then because of my success in that industry, people started coming to me for coaching and then I went to coach training.
Jeffrey Shaw: So for the past 10 years I’ve been supporting entrepreneurs through their entrepreneurial ventures and helping them. We’re helping them with their branding and marketing because as though even though as a coach, as a brand new consultant, I serve a huge and broad range of people in different industries. The one thing we all have in common is that there’s no business school for what we do. And that is my area of expertise. I like to market the impossible. I like to market which challenging. I like to help people develop the lingo with the people that they want to connect with so that they feel like they’re building a community not just a business.
Minette Riordan: So I’m curious what was the moment when you realize that this idea of lingo, which I’ll ask you also to define or this concept of the secret language was like your secret sauce?
Jeffrey Shaw: Great question. Because it actually it’s a 30 year old story if you will. I mean it’s and that’s what’s really both shocked and pleased me about the book is that it’s a 30 year old story that’s more relevant today. Because I had been lived, I think innately I understood so a little background here. So I grew up lower middle class in a country town. A couple hours in New York City, had a failing business. I knew, I realized that I needed to change that business and realized that I was selling a luxury product. As I said something nobody really needs and the people that can afford the luxury are the affluent market. So I understood that that was the market I needed to reach. The problem was I knew nothing at 23 years old at this time. I knew nothing about affluence, right? As a small company, affluence to me was, hey, made $50,000 you’re affluent, right?
Jeffrey Shaw: I mean, what do I know if people at multimillionaires and 25,000 square foot home, I know nothing about that, but what I realized instinctively, even at the age of 20 was that I could understand their lingo if I put some effort into it and understanding their lingo to me that means understanding someone’s essence. When you understand someone’s lingo, then here’s the irony of the whole concept of lingo is that when you truly understand someone’s lingo, you knew how to connect with them in a way that it’s so emotionally powerful and yet actually unspoken, right? So it’s the thing that happens in our own personal lives. When you do something, hey, you guys are married team, hopefully Minette, Hopefully he does something for you occasionally that so powerfully and special then you didn’t even know to ask for it.
Brad Dobson: Every once in a while.
Jeffrey Shaw: Every once in a while, but it’s a home run, right? It leads to good things, but that’s the power of it. Like when you’re able to do something for someone that you know them so well, you know what they need before they know they need it. Right? Or you know what they need and they can’t even identify what they need. Right. And I believe businesses can do this for the customers as well. Not to me is what it means to speak their lingo and you actually speaking, I mean lingo by definition is a jargon, et cetera. But really at the depth of it, it’s an empathetic understanding of your customers so well that you’re speaking to their emotional triggers and that’s what ultimately really moves people.
Brad Dobson: So this fascinates me. And we had at least some level. We work through this with our clients. I think proBably every body coaching in the business world does a little bit. I’m guessing that through. Well you said you sort of knew that initially, even at 20, you knew how to do this with your clients. There’s a lot of people obviously that don’t have that skill and you’re helping them. Interested tactically what it is you’re able to take them, the journey you’re able to take them on to develop that lingo. I mean, you could do interviews, you could do focus groups, you could do quizzes, whatever it is, or what is it that, what are the key parts that you develop that lingo with someone who’s selling painted ducks too, whatever it is.
Minette Riordan: Yeah, he’s going to share the Bergdorf Goodman started. Right.
Brad Dobson: Sure. I’ll tell you this, right? So, a strong distinction that was actually didn’t know how to do it. I just knew I needed to do it.
Brad Dobson: Gotcha.
Jeffrey Shaw: So 23 years old, I would have no idea how to do this. I just knew that I needed to do it because I needed to reach a market that I knew nothing about. And actually I’m going to kind of get back to Minette’s question a little bit that how this story came about is here it is 30 plus years later I was having a conversation with who turned out to be the editor of lingo. I was having a conversation with her and I told her that Bergdorf Goodman story she was like there’s your book, like everything you learned and that story is exactly what you need to teach others.
Jeffrey Shaw: So I had lived this experience but now needed to figure out how to lay down in a book. And the goal was, as I was working with AJ, my editor kept saying to, we’re running a linear book for non linear thinkers. We all serve the same similar audience. Like we are the squirrel chasers, we are all the … And I embrace all that. Like I’m not looking to, you might have to harness the squirrels to go in one direction, but I’m not looking to shut down anyone’s creativity. So I wanted to figure out how can I give the creative minded person a strategy to do this in their business in a linear fashion. So what I did is I worked at down to the five key emotional triggers that in even after all these decades, these five emotional triggers seemed to be the emotional triggers that you want to capture when branding your business and communicating to your clients that is most likely to attract to your ideal customer.
Jeffrey Shaw: And at the end of the day, that’s goal, right? The goal, it would none of us know business exists for everybody. We all have our ideal customers. Those customers that are the easiest to work with, that are the most profitable. And I will say probably most important is they allow us to do our best work. And that’s what’s important for creatives. We want to work the customer so already value what we do so we’re not wasting our time proving our value, but they already value what we do and who we are. And with those customers, those clients, we create our greatest value. We do our best work and when we do our best work, we have happier clients and they are more likely to tell other people. If there’s ever a journey or a secret to exponential success, it truly is only working with your ideal customers.
Brad Dobson: Sure.
Jeffrey Shaw: The problem is a lot of people get stuck in the cycle that some money is better than no money, but it’s not in the long run. Right? So, maybe to set the stage as I do feel like you have to give value to your listeners. Want to make sure we go over those five emotional triggers, but it sounds like Minette wants me to back up a little bit and tell you the Bergdorf Goodman story.
Minette Riordan: Yeah. Because I think it’s a visual example that answers Brad’s question of well, how do I figure this out? Right. And even whether you stumbled in the door or you went on purpose, this was how you figured it out.
Jeffrey Shaw: Yeah. And I very much went on purpose. We’re talking about also about the 80s. So brick and mortar was really the only approach nowadays you can do a tremendous amount of work by just really researching online and find out more about your ideal customers. So the Bergdorf Goodman story. Once I realized that I had this awareness that I need to reach the affluent market, but I knew nothing about them, I wanted to understand their lingo, meaning I didn’t. Again, I didn’t want to understand what the business did. I wanted to understand the people that went to the business. And that’s a big difference. Too often we study other businesses. I wanted to understand what the people that went to that business that I wanted to model experience. What were their emotional triggers. So Bergdorf Goodman, if anyone’s not familiar with it, it’s a one of a kind, department store, exclusive department store in New York city on fifth avenue at 59th street.
Jeffrey Shaw: One of the busiest interceptions in the world. And yet most people don’t even know it’s there because it’s not for everybody, but it is a one of a kind store. So I go in this store, of course, the marble floors, it’s salespeople are impeccably dressed. I grew up going to cost, cheap department stores, Kmart, Caldor back in the day. So here I go into the store and I had literally at 23 years old I had $20. That’s all I had. I had $20 in my pocket and as soon as I walked in, I walked into what was the jewelry department. I realized right away there is nothing here that would be $20. But I had up to the home comic accessories floor hoping there’d be something there for $20 I could buy. And I found this tiny votive candle and it’s really small little candle.
Jeffrey Shaw: Nonetheless, I asked for to be gift wrapped because I suspect that I could tell already that presentation was a big part of the lingo of affluent people. The lingo of making something look high quality and expensive. So I asked for it to be gift wrapped as I walked over to the gift wrap department. Actually, I was escorted to the gift wrap department by the sales lady. When she left me, I leaned over this window to the woman at the gift wrap department and I said to her, “Excuse me, but can you show me how to make this look expensive and high quality because I’m trying to figure out what rich people like?” Was blunt with her.
Brad Dobson: I love it.
Jeffrey Shaw: Right? She laughed. I mean, first this was like the first person in the store I felt like I could relate to somebody that gets their hands dirty. So she actually invited me into the back room and she started wrapping this candle in wads of tissue paper, like full sheets of tissue paper bunched together for this tiny little candle. And then she goes to put the candle in a silver metallic box, which is clearly their signature packaging. She goes to put this candle in the box and then she stops because ridiculously dramatic pause. She looks up at me and she said, “Don’t use any tape.”
Minette Riordan: I love this.
Jeffrey Shaw: And I’m like, why wouldn’t I use any tape? Like gift wrapping is always involved tape. I greW up in a family, we wrapped our Christmas presents and newspaper and duct tape, like, how do you not use tape? So I asked her, so why can’t I use any tape? She goes, Oh. She goes, well, this high quality customer who is a perfectionist, they’re going to say before they give this as a gift, they’re going to untie the ribbon on the box top.
Jeffrey Shaw: They’re going to take off the top of the box. They’re going to unfold the tissue paper or make sure the candle is in perfect shape, put the tissue paper back the top back on and retied ribbon. If there was any tape, you would not be able to do that without ruining the packaging. It was such a small detail, but I really. It was like a secret code. That’s where I came up with a secret language. This was like a secret language because if you aren’t a wealthy person, if you don’t shop at those stores, you would have no idea that no tape is a secret language. Right? If I didn’t know that I would have taped the heck out of that tissue paper and given it to my clients and I would have appeared to be a slouch to them.
Jeffrey Shaw: I would not have been speaking their lingo, but believe me, even learning that small thing into this day, by the way, 34 years later, I still package every photograph I deliver the same way. It is a clear indication to my high end clients that I know exactly how they tick. That’s speaking their lingo. Now, that was one of many small demons. Once I became … This was like a light bulb moment, I realized, okay, there’s like a whole other language and I’m not in that world, but if I can understand the lingo of that world, I can be in that world. Then I started looking around at the pricing psychology and the designer that are everywhere. My business wasn’t in my name at that time. I had a cute photography name, but I changed it to Jeffrey Shaw being in my own name because that clearly carried a cache. Part of the lingo of this market was they wanted to buy brand names, people’s names, right? So it literally was an afternoon that changed my life that I then set about, giving myself a goal of three months to completely repositioned, rebound brand my business and move it to an art market that could afford my services and no turning back within one year my business multiplied five times. And it’s never been nothing but uphill sense.
Brad Dobson: This is a fantastic story. It’s so interesting because it’s timely for me. I just started listening to the guy Ross podcast, how I built this-
Jeffrey Shaw: Yeah [crosstalk 00:15:40]
Brad Dobson: … And I think one of the most recent ones was a with the lady who developed rent the runway. And so when she was pitching this, the realization for her about that she could make this work was when she was talking to these young women who are not affluent at all, people who would look at runway level dresses and never be able to afford them. But we’re also saying, I just went out in my three different dresses, three different club nights and I’ve been on Instagram in each dress and I can’t be seen in that same dress again for the next Instagram photo. And to realize that they wanted experiences, they didn’t want to bUy the dresses they wanted the experience of them and to be able to put that into the world and on their Instagram for instance. And so the reason I relate that is that it’s very much similar to the story you just told in terms of being inside their heads and understanding what the key thing is that person really wants.
Jeffrey Shaw: I love that yo just said that.
Brad Dobson: EmotIonal level, lIke you said, not even at a verbal level, isn’t the communication. I’m getting this now. It’s a communication, a nonverbal communication.
Jeffrey Shaw: In my. And I wish the irony of writing a book called lingo, right? But in my keynotes, one of the things, it’s actually on a slide and everybody wants to take a picture of it, but I say the ultimate compliment in business is, wow it’s like you’re in my head.
Minette Riordan: Yep.
Jeffrey Shaw: Right. When your brand messaging, your core messaging speaks so much to someone’s heart, speaks to their lingo and they say, wow, it’s like you’re in my head like it’s a done deal. You can charge them Whatever they want, whatever you want. Like premium price, no longer matters as much. The bond that it creates creates loyalty, retention, referrals. It’s like there is no stronger emotion I think for people to feel like, wow, it’s like you’re in my head and I also often refer to it as the new standard of know, like and trust.
Jeffrey Shaw: Right? Because in business for years we’ve been saying, well, you need to get people to know, like, and trust you before they’ll buy. It’s like I believe people want more than that. They want more than your know, like, and trust. They literally want to feel like you get them.
Brad Dobson: Yeah. They want a connection.
Jeffrey Shaw: They want a connection. And I think this is only, this is I said earlier that it’s a 30 year old story that it’s more relevant today because as the world continues to head towards more technology and AI and all this stuff we’re headed towards, I’ve been in business and in the world long enough to know that every time the world goes in one direction, the opposite is true and is going to become a more technology advanced world is going to be a stronger craving for connection and humanity. And those businesses that understand their customers with such deep empathy and speak their lingo will stand out because it’s going to be a rare experience compared to how we’re treated in the rest of the world.
Minette Riordan: Yeah. And I love in the book you talk about instead of know, like, and trust, what people want to feel is that they’ve been seen and heard and it’s something you learn in coaching training, right? It’s something you learn in parenting, the power of reframing, but it’s that people want to show up and just instantly go, wow, you get me. I think that’s so crystal clear and we always joke that we love getting a lot of coaching from people on our podcast, right? We get walk away with so many insights and things to do and is how I felt when I was reading your book. It’s like this is so good and it’s like so easy for me to do it for other people and I struggled to do it for myself and I think entrepreneurs needed to be reminded of that you cannot build your business in a vacuum. And I think so often creatives are very introverted and they’re at home behind their computer trying to figure all this out and at the end of the day you got to go talk to real people. And so I so appreciated this idea of really getting out and looking at, talking to, connecting with, having conversations to get to the place where you understand those five secrets of the emotional landscape that you’re creating for them.
Jeffrey Shaw: And honestly this is the business model that fits creatives the best. I’m a creative, This is why I can relate so well more, the book speaks to the audience that it does because this has been my life. This is the business model for creatives. For years I would walk off the stage and people would walk up to me and say, thank you for giving me permission and I didn’t know what they meant, like what have I given you permission for? And I realized that through my work I was actually offering a business model for creatives that didn’t exist because they feel, that horrible pressure of, oh, I have to pick a niche. I had to focus on one thing. I am so not a focus on one thing person. Why is the world telling me to focus on one thing and I guess I can never be successful in business, which is why so many creative say, well, I hate the business side.
Jeffrey Shaw: Of course you hate the business side because you’ve never been allowed to be in business in a way that leverages your strengths and introversion, I’m an introvert. I am a trained introvert, but I’ve outgrown it. But I mean, introversion, relationship building or everything, empathy, empathy, like that is the biggest buzzword in business that I think it should be, is these are the natural strengths of most creatives. Like if there’s ever been a time when we get to be at our best in business this is it. Like these are actually the skillsets that I think the creative business owner is best at.
Minette Riordan: Yeah. It’s so true. So I’d love for you to share about the five secrets and I also wanted to talk about this. So I want to talk about the french fries story.
Brad Dobson: We just throwing stories at you today.
Jeffrey Shaw: I love that. Anybody even asked, I have done. Oh my gosh, I’ve probably done a hundred interviews since January to promote the book and no one’s asked me about the french fry story. So, and I love that story.
Minette Riordan: It’s my favorite. Because I felt like you got me in that moment you got me.
Jeffrey Shaw: And it was so insane. So I can’t wait to get back to that because it was like, it was one of the. Yeah, it was insane. So the five, and I refer to them as emotional triggers, right? Because these are five identifiable emotional triggers that will help your ideal client know that you were speaking their lingo. So step number one is perspective. You have to understand people’s perspective in order speak their lingo.
Jeffrey Shaw: The problem with this is as I was saying earlier, when people saying I’d give them permission, I think I give them permission to do, to build business the right way because businesses are inherently built backwards the way businesses are typically built. Businesses are built from an idea and built … They’re born from ideas and built on ambition, right? People have an idea and then they build this business. First thing we do is we design a logo and a business card. We build a website, we fill it up with words, and we put ourselves out there and we wonder why we’re not getting any customers or our ideal customers. Well, it’s because you haven’t built the business for the people you want to speak through to. So that’s why in this order, these five steps are imperative and you cannot build a business speaking anybody’s lingo until you really understand their perspective.
Jeffrey Shaw: That’s why I went to Bergdorf Goodman. I needed to understand the perspective of a world I knew nothing about. So if you’re an artist and you’re your patrons are wealthy, then do you know their lingo? Do you understand their perspective? How do they view things? How do they view the value of your art? If your audiences are millennials, do you really are without judgment and assumption, right? Because there’s tons of judgements and assumptions about people we don’t understand in our world. And that’s the point. It’s like without judgment or assumption, do you want to go to the effort of empathetically understanding their perspective? So step number one is you have to … It’s the proverbial walking a mile in their shoes and I don’t care if the shoes or high heels, you got to do it right? You kind of figure out what does the world look like from those you want to serve.
Jeffrey Shaw: Step number two, truly the most powerful emotional trigger I know of is familiarity, right? We are innately drawn to that which feels familiar to us and familiarity create, we’re drawn to it and it gives us comfort. I challenge anyone if you to Europe, I challenge anyone to not see a Starbucks or a or a McDonald’s logo. You can’t not see it because it’s so familiar to us. But familiarity is also a wrong emotional tug at our heart. It’s why there’s comfort food. It’s why we have traditions like thanksgiving or Christmas where we eat the same meal every year because there’s such a comfort in what is familiar and it stands out. I mean, you were just naturally drawn. I think everyone knows the feeling of there’s something, maybe it’s a movie or a book or something you’ve never heard of until someone tells you about it, but then you can’t not see it, right? You see it everywhere.
Minette Riordan: It’s like you buy a white minivan and then all of a sudden now you see on the road or white minivan.
Jeffrey Shaw: Right? And actually literally happened to me when years ago, my kids were younger, my daughter was about 10 years old and I bought a land rover because I had a Mini Cooper which was no longer working as a single dad with three kids, so I had to get all SUV, got the land rover, and literally my 10 year old daughter said that one day we’re driving a road and we were living in Connecticut. So what she saId was true. We’re driving to the road and she said, daddy, before you bought this Land Rover, now every other car on the road is a Land Rover. And to hear that from a 10 year old was like she couldn’t have thought that it’s just an awareness, that’s the power of familiarity and incredibly powerful.
Jeffrey Shaw: So you want to recreate in your own business that feeling of familiar doesn’t mean you’re copying, but what feels familiar in their world, right? Are they more comfortable in home depot or a high end boutique what environment feels familiar to them? The third is style. Style is similar to familiarity but different and that style is the decision maker. We make decisions every day based on whether we feel like the style of something speaks to us. And this is so true of art. Why do we buy style? Why do we buy certain art? We choose art based on the style. Like I like abstract landscapes, right? And when I vacation I will tend to buy a piece of art from where I vacation rather than some trinket.
Minette Riordan: That’s too.
Jeffrey Shaw: Yeah. So I’ve got beautiful art from Italy and Ireland. And I like abstract landscapes. That’s a style I like. I’m much more of an abstract person but not so abstract. You don’t know what it is, but you can tell to a landscape, right? I often compare it to, if you’re shopping at a discount store, like a TJ Maxx and all the designers styles are on one rack for your size. You flipped through those hangers. What makes you stop the style? You hold it up and you think, this is so me. So you want to create a brand image and a website that your customers, that it stops them in their tracks because it feels like it’s speaking to them. Right? So that style. The next is pricing psychology. And let’s face it, you both know that a lot of creatives hate pricing. We’re afraid of pricing, but pricing creates perception. So the first thing I say to my clients when I start working with them as what, how do you want to be perceived?
Jeffrey Shaw: What perception do you want to create? Do you want to create a perception that your high end, do you want to create a perception that you’re affordable, and if you want to create the perception that you are high end and an artist to be respected, then you better command a price that says that, right? Because we all have all made decisions to not purchase something because it was so inexpensive. We assumed it was poor quality. Right? I have always been one of the most expensive portrait photographers you’ll find because it was an intentional effort to create a perception that this was going to be quality, this was not for everybody and that, it was low volume. I did a limited number of shoots, even at the peak of my career. This was not for everybody. So the price create that perception.
Brad Dobson: Yeah. Those folks that you’re selling to don’t want to feel like they’re buying the equivalent of a Walmart portrait studio type of thing. Right.
Jeffrey Shaw: Unless that’s your market, right? If you’re in business as higher volume and that’s it. Yeah. I love that you bring up Walmart and I often ask audiences that I’m speaking to because once you understand the concept of lingo, you realized that you can’t unsay it. Right. Walmart has a very specific lingo. It’s very cost conscious.
Brad Dobson: Yup.
Jeffrey Shaw: Right. Everything about their business rollback pricing the pricing is priced to the 100th of a cent. So you don’t feel like you’re paying more than a 100th of a cent more than you have to. The land of the bright lights, the end caps that are busy clutter because clutter is associated with lower end.
Jeffrey Shaw: You go into a high end store, you’re not going to see a register, right? You go into a Walmart, all the registers aligned up front. You go into Neiman Marcus, you’re lucky if you can find the register. It’s tucked away. It’s tucked to merchandised, maybe in Bergdorf Goodman, they’re in separate rooms. It’s not transactionally minded. They don’t want to bring any attention to the cost. Right? So Walmart is an example, is very cost conscious target similarly in a way, but they’re very value conscious, right? People at target, we’ll spend money. They just want to feel like they’re getting more money than what they’re paying. And if you’ll notice, target and Walmart are almost always right down the street from one another because the truth is both exist in the same market. Cost conscious people and value conscious people. They’re just carving out their space because they’re speaking the lingo of the people that want to reach.
Minette Riordan: I love that. And what’s number five?
Jeffrey Shaw: Number five is a words, right? So now, and that’s why I said these steps have to be done in order you can apply your words to attract your ideal customers and filter out the ones that you don’t want. Right? So you the words that you use. It’s not until you understand someone’s perception, what feels familiar to them, what looks like a style that speaks on their behalf and you’ve aligned your business with their pricing psychology. It’s only then can you actually start speaking to them and put words on your website that actually are speaking to that specific person. Otherwise it’s a shot in the dark. You’re just putting whatever words you want out there and there’s no attempt to speak to a specific customer.
Minette Riordan: I love that and I love everything you said and I really do feel their emotional triggers and I’m curious about what you see on the emotional side for your clients because what we’ve experienced working with creatives is that their head in their emotions get in the way. I’m doing this work, right? And it’s hard to see the perspective familiarity, style and pricing when you’re also being told I have to be an original or I’m worried about, well, what if they don’t like it or what if I’m pricing it too much? So how do you support people with kind of the personal development side of building a business?
Jeffrey Shaw: Yeah, so my entire, everything in my world of coaching, whether it’s my podcast is Creative Warriors, the coaching, the branding work that I do. In fact, the tagline on Creative Warriors says it all and it is business with a soul, right? So that’s that’s the lingo I speak and those of the people I draw forward, right? I want to draw forward the people that want a new way of doing business. They want to do business with a soul, so they’re neither so business oriented that they just, they want to work with anybody that are overly aggressive, but they’re also not so wow wow that they just sitting back and manifesting, that’s not my ideal client. Like I want clients, my ideal client are people that want to do business, but from a place of soul, again, I’ve tried both. I just, I don’t resonate with the people that are so spiritual that we spend countless hours with them talking about visions that came to them.
Jeffrey Shaw: I’m like, but yeah, what are we doing about that? I’m too reactional. I don’t want to just sit around the campfire. It’s like, what are we doing with that? Right. And that’s imperative as a branding consultant, because I’m brutally honest with people. It’s like, I understand you have a great idea, but if I don’t see it as marketable, I’m not going to suggest that you invest in my services to help you brand it. Right. It has to be marketable, but the thing is, I think most things are marketable.
Minette Riordan: Yeah. I totally agree.
Jeffrey Shaw: Yeah. I think most things are marketable if you figure is there something out there for everybody. You just have to really figure out, I think a couple of … One of the phrases I use that tries to reset the mindset of the creatives is how different would the world of business feel to you if you believe the audience that you want to reach is already there, just waiting for you to show up, and I do believe that. I think there’s an audience for everything.
Brad Dobson: Well especially these days.
Jeffrey Shaw: Right? Your job is to figure out how to show up in their world. One of the most retweeted post I’ve ever done. I put in every one of my keynotes and everybody takes a picture of it and it winds up all over the place, is that it’s not your job to prove your value to anyone. It is your job to find the people who value what you do.
Minette Riordan: Nice.
Jeffrey Shaw: Right? We to stop again, businesses are soul. We have to stop trying to sell people. We have to stop trying to convince people. It’s a waste of time because inherently you can’t really convince anybody to value something they don’t already value then you’re selling. But there is a whole audience of people out there that already value who you are and what you do. Find them, make your brand messaging so strong that you stand out above everybody else and they see you like a beacon of light.
Brad Dobson: I think the wonderful thing here is just, I hope that people hear how intentional this approaches to connecting, getting that connection with the people that value you. And we see this so much and I admire it so much in people like yourself, Jeffrey and other experts we see in the business is the intentionality that they bring to developing these things. You got to sit down and do the work to really understand.
Minette Riordan: Yeah, yeah. It’s beautiful. And when I think about, okay, so how does this relate to Structure and Flow and productivity? Like when you get this nailed, you get to let go of all the stuff you’re doing, all the busy work and all the marketing and the means. And the blogging and the like, you get to let go of all of it and just write love letters to your people and they show up.
Minette Riordan: Right? To me, it’s when people really get that a solid brand that’s built to attract your ideal clients is right. The people do show up and that you’re not just shooting in the dark.
Jeffrey Shaw: Yeah, and I think how it all ties into productivity as well as my favorite quote of all time is by Jim Roan and his quote is that our level of success rarely exceeds our level of personal development. That means everything to me, even from a productivity standpoint, because when I want to grow up on a road, grow my business, I want to be more productive. I first turned to how do I need to grow as a person? How do I grow as the person to raise the ceiling for which the level of success that I want is going to come up underneath that ceiling and touch that ceiling.
Jeffrey Shaw: And then I can raise it again. So I always turn towards how can I improve myself? How can I develop who I am and how I think in order to become more successful and productive.
Minette Riordan: I love that. And it’s a lot what we talk about that productivity is the mindset.
Jeffrey Shaw: And the French Fry story you mentioned, right? So let’s kind of-
Minette Riordan: Yeah the French Fry story please.
Jeffrey Shaw: It’s truly one of, I think it’s something I kind of want to bust up in the world because we live in such a black and white world and I think it is truly one of the biggest obstacles with people’s own personal development that everything has to be so black and white. So it happened the French Fry stories as I was writing the book and really feeling the frustration of living in a world where you have to be this or that, black or white.
Jeffrey Shaw: So this waitress, while I’m at a kind of a casual, I live here in Miami and it was a casual fish and burger restaurant on the water. Those waitress takes my water and I think I was ordering a cheeseburger, what have you, and just so kind of fries, would you like with that? And I said, what kind of fries you like, I said, what kind of fries do you have? Almost with a socratic size. she’s like, we have regular fries, curly fries, spicy fries, waffle fries, steak fries. Like it just is never ending list of the types of fries. So I looked at her and said, I’d like all of them. That’s because you can have all of them. I said, why not? She goes, because we don’t do it that way. I said, no, no, I’m not asking for more fries than normal. I just want a little sampling of all of them.
Jeffrey Shaw: She’s probably can’t do that. I’m like, why not? They’re all made, right. I just want a little sampling of all of them and this through her for such a loop because this isn’t how the world functions, right? I have to be. I’m forced to make a choice. Pick a fry, but I don’t want to pick. I don’t like picking between black and white this way, that way. Why not sample the whole world. So she was getting frustrated and I said, look, just talk to the chef. I’ll bet you can if you try. So then I just kind of wanted to kind of pick her up. I’m like, I’ll bet you could do it if you really try. I’ll bet if you go back there, he’ll think you’re crazy, but I bet you can do it. I was trying to cheer her on and a little while later she came with my burger and a plate of sample of all the fries and she was beaming from ear to ear.
Jeffrey Shaw: I think she was proud of herself that she. And I think I felt like I taught her a lesson that day that going through like she was young and I’m like, we don’t have to go through our life always being forced to choose between things that when you stop choosing between things, you start choosing everything. And that to me is the fundamental lesson of abundance and having a creative business. We all want everything. We want personal fulfillment. We want success in our life. We want success in our business. We know we want happiness, we want everything. Then why live a life of choosing things? Why not choose everything? I actually did a whole keynote talk about this a couple of years ago. It was called life as an everything bagel and I studied the history of everything bagel and I said, I admire the brilliant baker who at some point got frustrated, choose in between sesame seeds and garlic and onion, and just said, screw it. I’m going to put everything in one bagel.
Minette Riordan: I love that. [crosstalk 00:37:48] Bagel.
Jeffrey Shaw: Who doesn’t love an everything bagel? It’s got everything in it, so why shouldn’t we live that way?
Minette Riordan: Awesome. I think that’s a great place to wrap this up. So much juicy goodness. We could keep talking for hours.
Brad Dobson: I think so.
Minette Riordan: We probably need to have another podcast and just like keep this conversation going. Thank you very much for your time. And Jeffrey, where should people go if they want to connect with you? Follow you, listened to your podcast?
Brad Dobson: Find out about the book?
Minette Riordan: Find out about the book.
Jeffrey Shaw: Sure. Actually, a fun thing I like to do on podcasts, which I’ll offer to you already. I don’t always, but hey, you seem like a fun group. I actually spent a fair amount of my week reviewing other people’s websites. I do a quick review of the website and then I emailed them back and say, here’s some of the lingo breaks I see in your website and it doesn’t take me that long. It sounds like a daunting task, but unfortunately it’s so obvious that it actually doesn’t take that long. So if you go to lingoreview.com is a real quick application to fill out, because I want to hear who you think you’re talking to and then I look at your website and I’m like, oh honey, you’re not. That’s actually not what you’re saying. Sorry. And 98 out of 100 websites in my own research have it wrong. 98 out of 100.
Minette Riordan: Yeah we know we have it wrong.
Brad Dobson: That’s a fantastic offer.
Jeffrey Shaw: So it’s really fun. Like I said it sounds more daunting but it doesn’t take me long because I look at your website the way your potential customers are looking at your website and I can instantly see the break. So lingoreview.com. And then once you’re there, I think my links to my book, the lingo, the book, the book is also available on amazon, but and I’m easy to find on social media, everything you need to find is there. But hey, rather than just chatting, let me do something for you, a value, and then we can start a relationship.
Brad Dobson: Lovely.
Minette Riordan: I love that. Thank you so much. That’s an incredibly generous offer and I know all of the creatives that are listening to this will take advantage, including us.
Brad Dobson: Good stuff. We’ll have that in the show notes.
Minette Riordan: All right everyBody. We’ll see you on the next episode of Structure and Flow. Have a great day.