We've also been trained that more is better when it comes to everything from value to products to company distinction. So we slave away to present our long lists of benefits, features and leadership credentials.

Unfortunately, all that chest thumping does little to create credibility with our audiences. In fact, our long laundry lists actually reduce our impact on our audience. Here's why.

Our unconscious mind processes and filters long inputs by averaging them. Consequently, when a prospect or customer sees that long list of yours - they don't get the full force of that big long list.  They average of all of its power. 

For example, let's say you list 20 things that make your company credible.

  • Let's say the first three to five items on that list are way powerful, kicktail distinction.
  • The next five are somewhat powerful but not exactly unique.
  • The final ten are interesting but your competitors might also be able to claim something similar. 

Your audiences won't see that big list as impressive. In fact, because of the big list you'll lose the power of your first five kicktail distinctions.  Why? 

How Our Minds Process Your Lists

Our brains can't input all of the data they receive, so they categorize, generalize and delete information to manage all of the inputs.  

That same brain function works on our laundry lists of supposedly impressive accomplishments, product values, service offerings and more. When our audiences' minds see those big long lists - they trigger the averaging function. All of that distinction you list will be averaged. So those first five powerful distinctions get lost in the categorizing and generalizing functions of our brain. 

Instead of being more compelling and engaging with long lists - we actually reduce our impact.

Think Average 

We've all been taught that more is better. That's simply not true in the case of the human mind. The more items we add to the list, the more average we become. 

Instead of focusing on creating that big long page of company distinctions, focus on a small number that are knock-it-outta-the-park powerful. Yes, there will be white space on the page. That's OK. Your audience will average your powerful few and you will impress!  

For everything you say or do in marketing and sales - train yourself to Think Average and stick with what's really powerful.

You'll create a much more compelling impact.  And think about all the time you'll save trying to come up with those big long lists.