You've played this game as a child.
And no matter which side you were on, you simply stuck to your position, without budging an inch.
So how do you win the battle of perception?
You do what Grizz Wylie does. Grizz, a well-known coach for the New Zealand All Blacks, is considered by many to be gruff and abrasive.
If you ask Grizz if he's gruff and abrasive, he'd be more than likely to say ‘no'.
But you see, that doesn't change the public's perception
If the public sees a person to be gruff and abrasive, that person is indeed gruff and abrasive.
And so Grizz, grizzles.
He growls on radio. He says, “Don't expect me to smile.”
And the crowd loves him for his gruffness.
Now let's flip this Grizz scenario around 180 degrees
Let's assume for a second, Grizz said he wasn't gruff.
That he didn't scowl. Or rumble.
Suddenly Grizz would be a lot less-loved
You see, when your customer thinks you're a small business–you're a small business. When your customer thinks you live too far in the boondocks–you do live on another planet.
Whatever your customer believes to be true–is true.
Heck, this doesn't sound like you're winning the battle
Which is why you need to take two distinct steps, to make customers like you more than ever before.
Step 1: You need to accept your ‘negative' perception
Adam Gordon, Profits Leak Detective, works out of Darwin, Australia. That's pretty much in the middle of nowhere. Consider this: Darwin is closer to the capitals of three other countries, than to the capital of Australia.
Unless they're from around Darwin, clients may be more than reluctant to work with Adam, because of the remoteness of his location.
Crocodiles. Aboriginal art. remote Katharine Gorge. (Yes, we know it's not that remote and there aren't any crocs crossing main street–but hey, you don't want to fight the perception, right?)
So the first step for Adam is to highlight how remote he is from everyone else.
Step 2: Telling customers why that ‘negative' works to their advantage
Any negative can be quickly worked to an advantage. Adam can quickly show clients how he runs a successful business out of ‘the boondocks,' and hence his clients can run their businesses out of just about anywhere on the planet.
By accepting the ‘so-called' negative perception, you immediately agree with your client.
And when you're agreeing with your client…um…they've got to agree with you. Once both of you are on the same page, you can quickly turn it around, and show the benefits of being who you are.
The worst thing you can do is try to be who you aren't.
Trying to be bigger, smarter, taller, faster, than you are only ends up with the age-old game.
It’s a game with no winners.