downton abbey business

An Important Business Lesson from Downton Abbey

What’s the point of Downton Abbey?

Why was it created?

To entertain? To provide escapism on a Sunday night? Keep UK citizens Calm and able to Carry On? To promote Britain to America? Or give the wonderfully talented Maggie Smith something to do?

…well maybe all of those reasons are true in part… but the main purpose of Downton Abbey, the real reason it exists is to…

…give advertisers a way of reaching you!

i.e. it’s a way to make profits!

Yes, ITV isn’t a charity. They know we won’t watch just adverts all evening (as good as some of them are), so they give us something like Downton for free. They’re selling your attention and the only way to get your attention in order to sell it to their advertisers is to give you something you want in return for it – e.g. entertainment, laughter, escapism, information, something to talk about (if you don’t like Downton, then think of your favourite programme on commercial TV).

So what’s this got to do with your business?

Well you want to be the go-to business for whatever you provide, right? You want to be your target market’s obvious choice when they’re thinking of buying a product or service you offer, yeah?

Then you need people’s attention! 

Think of the average business website, social media output, newsletter or flyer – they usually contain something about services, products or special offers – and as lovingly as these are thought out, written and packaged, they are still adverts!

Your audience is getting NOTHING from them aside from being sold at!

(don’t even get me started on the flurry of LinkedIn published posts that are just pasted sales copy with an ‘oh so clever’ comedy title! People, your business is your legacy, your livelihood, an expression of you and your values – don’t treat it like a school project!)

So to have and hold the attention of your target audience, you need to give them something of value in return for their attention. 

Once you have their attention you not only have the beginnings of what could turn out to be a fantastic portfolio of new business but also you become known as the THE go-to business in your field.

So how will your business earn people’s attention over the next few days, weeks, months and years?

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