Consumers receive plenty of marketing messages every minute. In effect, they expect marketers to market the heck out of any situation.
If I believed every marketing pitch I’ve ever seen, I’d be broke and out of storage space.
To combat this, consumers discount marketing messages. Sometimes we discount them by 10%, sometimes we discount them by 30%, and if the marketing message is especially outrageous, then we ignore 100% of it.
Now let’s evaluate this situation from the perspective of the marketer.
What is a marketer to do if they know they’re about to face a tough crowd?
They should apply a strategy that’s unexpected, that’s subtle.
And this is where Implied versus Stated marketing comes into play. (Note: when we say “implied marketing”, we’re not referring to “implicit marketing“, which is similar.)
For example, let’s say you are an energy drink mix company and want to let the world know how great your product is.
Here is the stated version of your pitch:
THERE ARE OVER 122 ENERGY DRINKS ON THE MARKET. THEY ARE ALL TERRIBLE.
Here is the implied version of that same pitch:
THERE ARE OVER 122 ENERGY DRINKS ON THE MARKET. WE’VE TRIED THEM ALL.
Notice the difference between implied marketing and stated marketing?
In the first instance, we’re making a very specific claim. Can the consumer really trust us? In short, probably not. So they’ll discount this message by 30%.
On the other hand, the implied scenario isn’t saying we’re better than the competition. It just states, “we’ve tried them all.”
When the reader reads this they have to fill in the empty space themselves. So they fill it in with, “We’ve tried them all. Ours is better than the 122 we tested.”
In essence, the reader is, on their own, spelling out the punch line.
Nothing could be more persuasive.
Want to see another example of implied marketing? Click here.
NOTE: I’d like to make a point here. Marketers should never lie or mislead readers. If you’re going to lie you’re not a marketer, you’re a criminal. But the goal is to use the flexibility of the English language to craft a compelling message. In this particular example, if anything, the marketer is understating things.