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Give Feedback without Hurting Feelings

You hired someone to do some writing for you. Problem is, the writing itself isn’t exactly what you’re looking for. Or maybe it’s just not written well, or you need some changes…

Give Feedback without Hurting Feelings

Or perhaps a marketing colleague has asked you for feedback on their writing, and frankly you hate it.

What can you do to help the person make the appropriate changes, without offending them?

Try making it about you and not about the writing.

For example, instead of saying, “The chronology is confusing,” you tell them that you got confused by the chronology.

Instead of, “The dialogue sounds too contrived,” tell them you’re having trouble relating to the dialog, and give them a specific example of what you mean and how it could be changed.

By making it about you, you’re not insulting the work or the author. You’re simply offering your own experience of the writing.

This helps no matter what you’re critiquing – software, artwork, a website, etc. You can also use the phrase, “Have you considered…” to make a suggestion they can think of as their own.

Business is a people sport, and you must develop skills to successfully communicate with and offer honest and sometimes painful feedback to others while maintaining rapport if you expect to be successful.

Apply some of the tips above and be sure to give feedback without hurting feelings… Of course, these same strategies can be helpful in your personal relationships as well. 😉

Are You The Low Man on the Totem Pole?

There is an American expression that if you are starting at the bottom of something and working your way up, then you are, “Low man on the totem pole.”

Are You The Low Man on the Totem Pole?

A totem pole is a Native American sculpture that is generally quite tall, with carvings of animals, symbols and people stacked one on top of the other.

But Native Americans are smart. They know that on a 30 foot pole, no one is going to see the top carvings very well.

So they place the most important person or carving on the BOTTOM.

That’s right – if you’re on the bottom and just starting out, you are the most important marketer in the room. Do you know why?

Because everything is wide open for you. You have the chance to do anything you want, target any sub-niche, become an expert in any topic and so forth.

And you have the opportunity to turn the niche completely on its head and make it your own.

Being new is a positive. No one has pegged you as the “So-in-so” guy or gal yet. Your reputation is pristine. Your future is incredibly bright. And there are no limits to what you can achieve.

So if you’re new in a niche, then celebrate – you are indeed the “Low wo/man on the totem pole!”

The 5 Ingredients of Irresistible Headlines

Next time you write a headline, see how many of these you can incorporate.

The 5 Ingredients of Irresistible Headlines

Self-interest – This is the obvious benefit that keeps the reader on the page, reading what you have to say. For example, “Revealed at Last – 13 Perfectly Legal Ways to Make Money in Your Pajamas”

Believability – Placing some kind of ‘proof’ in your headline. For example, “Diabetes Cured in 2 Weeks – A Chicago Hospital Confirms Shocking New Remedy. No Pills, No Surgery, No Prescriptions” In this case, the third party evidence dispels skepticism and keeps the reader’s attention.

News – Anything targeted and newsworthy tends to work really well. For example, “Warning! Don’t Even Think Of Calling Your Broker Before You Read This Startling Report about What’s Happening in The Market Right Now.”

Curiosity – This might in fact be the most compelling force in human nature. The best headlines build curiosity to the point where the reader is forced to look within the article or sales letter to quell their curiosity. For example, “What Never to Eat on an Airplane.”

Quick and Easy – If you can offer a quick and easy solution to a pressing problem, let them know in the headline. For example, “Lose a Pound a Day Just by Eating this Fruit.”

The more of these qualities you can combine in your headlines, the better they will tend to work and the higher response you’ll get.

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