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Never let your board of directors decide what customers want

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“I know of nothing more ridiculous than gray-haired boards of directors deciding on what housewives want.”

This is how legend copywriter Claude Hopkins described companies pretending they knew what their audience wanted.

It’s enemy number one of high-converting copy.

And whether you’re a business owner or a copywriter, you have to keep it in mind.

Yes, even if you created your business to scratch your own itch.

You are not the customer.

What do I mean?

Hopkins goes further:

We must never judge humanity by ourselves. The things we want, the things we like, may appeal to a small minority. The losses occasioned in advertising by venturing on personal preference would easily pay the national debt. We live in a democracy. On every law there are divided opinions. So in every preference, every want. Only the obstinate, the bone-headed, will venture far on personal opinion. We must submit all things in advertising, as in everything else, to the court of public opinion.”

Great reminder that whatever you think you know about your customers, you should forget it.

The only way to know, is to do the research.

And then apply your intuition and expert knowledge of the market to fill in the gaps.

Next time your own head or your board tells you that “you must do XYZ” because they know… stop, go to the market, and think again.

Have you been guilty of “deciding what the housewives want”?

P.S. We’re 1 subscriber away from 60 on the Youtube channel!🎉 Thank you so much to every single one of you. It’s going to get rowdy on there soon. I’d love if you wanted to spread the word.

Quote and reflection of the day:

“He steeled himself to persevere, subordinating his every impulse to the profit motive, working to master unruly emotions and striving for  an almost Buddhist detachment from his own appetites and passions. “I had a bad temper,” Rockefeller said. “I think it might be called an ugly temper when too far provoked.” So he trained himself to control this temper and tried never to be guided by ego or pique.”

  • Ron Chernow, Titan

Working towards mastery over your emotions has the highest ROI of any skill you could learn. When you control your emotions, everything else comes easier. It’s about the space you create leaving room and energy for the rest.

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