Tommy Kramer Tip #18 – Don’t tell me what to think

Nothing is more annoying than being told what to think. You’ve seen those promos for new TV shows or movie trailers that say things like “This fall’s brightest new comedy” or “The first great action movie of the Summer.” But we never believe that.

Look, America is a “Not me” country. Always has been, since the first settlers came over from Europe.
“You will pay a tax on tea.” (Not me. Let’s dump the tea into the harbor.)
“You will worship at this church” (No, I will worship wherever or whatever I want. Maybe like George Carlin, I might just want to pray to Joe Pesci. He seems like a guy who can get things done.)
“You will live on the East Coast.” (Nope, heading to California now. Hope the wagon wheel doesn’t break, or I’ll be stuck in Oklahoma.)

Now think of how many times you’ve heard a deejay say “Here’s a new one you’ll really like.” (Not me. It’s putrid.)
Or “You told us what songs you wanted to hear.” (I didn’t. No one ever contacted me, or you’d be playing a lot more Mark Knopfler or Kenny Wayne Shepherd.)
“Your Favorites from the 80’s, 90’s, and today” or “Today’s best bongo music, and your all-time favorites.” (Seems like this is always followed with a song I can’t stand by an artist I’d like to hit with my car and leave lying in the road.)
“This song just makes you feel good.” (No, this song was my ex-girlfriend’s favorite song. Now, it just reminds me of when she dumped me.)

It’s not just in promos or Imaging, either. I hear it in Content, too. Just the other day, I heard a jock talking about a giveaway, and he said “So you’re thinking ‘I’d like to win that’…”
No, I was thinking “Why would anyone want to win that?”

So here’s the deal. You can tell me what YOU think, but you can’t tell me what I think.
“I think that’s a great movie” says something about you. Whether I agree with you or not, I’ve learned a little about you. You’re a little more familiar now. There’s another thread of connection between us.

And THAT works.

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Tommy Kramer
Radio Talent Coach
214-632-3090 (iPhone)
Member, Texas Radio Hall of Fame
© 2013 by Tommy Kramer. All rights reserved.