The All Powerful Why

One of my friends who is a physician always gives the patient a pamphlet on the medicine he prescribes. He tells the patient…you MUST read this, to understand the ALL POWERFUL WHY. The genius of this Dr’s advice is that he understands that the greatest motivation comes not just from knowing what medicine to take, but by knowing why one should take it, and what happens if one doesn’t take as prescribed.

We find this also when we deal with our children. Many times we focus on what we want our child to do, but fail to show them why they should do it. For instance…if I tell my son to brush his teeth regularly (what to do) and expect him to do it because I said so, that would be one thing. However, if I tell him he needs to brush his teeth, or he will develop cavities, and have to go to the dentist who will stick a needle deep into his gums, drill his teeth, and maybe even pull one…

Or, if I tell him that if he does brush his teeth, he will have a beautiful smile and more people will like him, he will be more successful, marry the prettiest girl, etc.

I have given him the ALL POWERFUL WHY, and I will be buying more tooth paste.

We find this too is critical when we make an offer or an appeal on a broadcast. If we only describe the product or the mission, and only talk about what it is and what needs to be done, we will fall short in getting the audience response we desire.

But if we give them THE ALL POWERFUL WHY, we will be amazed at the difference in response.

One of our clients does this so well, and his broadcast gets tremendous response. When offering a book or teaching series, he tells the viewer, “the reason we have produced these materials is to help you study the Bible for yourself…it is vital that you study God’s word and develop the knowledge of how to function in God’s kingdom… people perish for the lack of knowledge …we help you acquire the understanding of how to function, succeed and prosper in God’s kingdom. Without this knowledge, you will be ineffective; frustrated …this is WHY we have prepared these materials. (My paraphrase).

In other words, tell what is in the product and why one must have it. In my opinion, the fundamentals of effective direct marketing advertising have not the product, extol the benefits, and ask for the order.

Extolling the benefits is giving people the ALL POWERFUL WHY… What the product will do for the viewer if he orders it,and how he will suffer if he doesn’t.

Do you see a person or a donor?

Human Nature

Do you see a person or an object when you encounter someone new? With the needs of the Ministry and with your heavenly vision constantly on your heart, it is easy to view people as objects rather than human beings who have needs, desires, and dreams of their own.

As it has been said, objects are to be used, and people are to be loved.  Many times there is a great temptation to want to use people, and love objects.  It is human nature and true for all of us. Yet it is God’s nature to do the former.  We sometimes find ourselves torn between the two perspectives.

At BMCFerrell, we always counsel ministers to consider everything they do as ministry to people.  Oral Roberts once said,”everyone is sick in some way…it is our job to heal them.”  We believe that if we truly meet the needs of the people, it can’t help but follow, that the people will meet the needs of the Church/Ministry.

According to David Ogilvy in his classic book, Ogilvy on Advertising,  Bill Bernbach was one of the “six giants who invented modern advertising”.  In today’s communications revolution, where everything is changing at warp speed, we should remember Mr. Bernbach’s wisdom:

“Human nature hasn’t changed for a billion years.  It won’t even vary in the next billion years. Only the superficial things have changed. A communicator must be concerned with the unchangingman-what compulsions drive him, what instincts dominate his every action, even though his language too often camouflages what really motivates him.  For if you know these things about a man, you can touch him at the core of his being. One thing is unchangingly sure.  The creative man with an insight into human nature, with the artistry to touch and move people, will succeed. Without them he will fail.”

What do you have to do?

“When I see three oranges, I have to juggle.  And if I see two towers, I have to walk.”

These remarkable words were spoken by the tightrope-walker, Philippe Petit, in answer to the question of the police as to why he had walked (at 7:50am) on a rope shot with a crossbow from one tower of the New York World Trade Center to the other. When Philippe had seen the two spires of the Notre Dame in Paris, he had done the same. “L’Art pour l’Art” is this highwire artist’s philosophy.

When they asked Philippe Petit why he wanted to walk on a slender wire strung between the two tallest towers of New York City, everyone thought he did it for money, for publicity, for fame.  But he said, “If I see three oranges, I have to juggle. And if I see two towers, I have to walk.” (from The Genesee Diary, by Henri Nouwen)

God has called and gifted many with a great vision to reach the world for Christ through media.

When I see one I believe in, I have to help. When I see a guitar, I have to play.

When you see _________, what do you have to do?

Ben Ferrell

10 Common Mistakes Made In an Agency Relationship

1. Mistrust:

Success can only come by investing time in a relationship where you trust competent people with projects and advice. Make sure the agency you select is trustworthy and competent. Check references by talking with other clients and vendors to verify their credibility, and do this before you sign a contract. Once you make your choice, trust them and allow their gifts to work for you.

2. Withholding Key Information:

Any agency needs complete information in order to provide good, informed advice and execution. Decisions must be based upon facts and statistics, not guesses and opinions. To get the best service, you must provide the best information.

3. Delay:

Synergy between organizations is critical. Slow response to projects, answers to questions, or approval of proposals or presentation of work (editorial, artwork, media avails, etc.) negatively affects the synergy in a dramatic way. It also de-motivates your agency. So respond to your agency the same way you expect them to respond to you—quickly and correctly.

4. Leaving Your Agency Out of the Loop:

When you don’t bring your agency to the strategy session or planning table, it hinders everyone’s efforts. The goal is usually to build a broader reach and organization for your message and ministry. A good agency has extensive experience in creating results and wants to share that knowledge with you. Bring them in at every opportunity.

5. Ignoring Data:

Allow your agency to analyze all of the available data. Nothing is insignificant. Often success is in the details of what your audience is saying, whether in their words, actions, or lack of response. Even if the facts are ugly, don’t ignore or bury the data. Wisdom from the Proverbs teaches us that any enterprise succeeds with wise planning, prospers through common sense, and flourishes by keeping abreast of the facts. With your agency as your partner you can implement all these powerful principles.

6. Not Utilizing Market Research:

In the secular advertising world, a smart business never creates or releases a product or service without first obtaining good research. Those that forsake good research usually fail. Likewise, ministries should take advantage of the knowledge and wisdom that is available before making important decisions.

7. Dismissing An Objective View:

Many times, employees or principals of a ministry get so involved in their activities that they “can’t see the forest for the trees.” An agency can give valuable input from an outside, objective view. There is great value in wise counsel, so seek a different perspective from the agency you trust.

8. Not Measuring Response:

In today’s technological age, there is never a good reason to not gather good response data. You probably are not aware of all of the methods available for measuring response, but your agency should know how to tell whether your efforts are having the impact you expect them to have.

9. Territorialism:

Key staff can sometimes feel threatened by the expertise of an agency. This never needs to happen since we’re all serving a cause greater than ourselves. A good agency endeavors to make key employees heroes and will always give them credit for good results.

10. Not Paying The Bills On Time:

“The workman is worth their hire.” Agencies work on a small margin and media outlets, suppliers and other vendors often work on a cash-only basis, so cash flow is vital to the agency. Slow payment creates unnecessary tension and interrupts the efforts to serve your ministry at the highest level.