I just got off the phone with a friend of mine in the Hotel business in Omaha. It was an interesting conversation because she had lost a sale because her wall in the event space wasn't green. Not environmentally green, I mean she didn't get the job because her space wasn't the color green. She was trying to figure out why someone would choose an event space based on the color. I explained to her that someone had influenced the purchase process.
I imagine the conversation went something like this:
"Hi this is Nate, how can I help you?"
"Hi, yes, my name is Jane and I would like to know about your meeting space at your hotel."
"Sure thing Jane. It sits 25, has all the amenities, and is a very excellent room for your meeting, and is $100."
"Well, thank you nate for your candidness, I have a few more places I have to call. Let me check with them and get back to you."
"Jane, thanks for calling, I really appreciate it. May I make one more suggestion?"
"Sure, I would love some advice."
"Make sure they have green walls in their meeting space."
"Really, why is that?"
"Because green is a soothing color that makes one more apt to learning and suggestion. It will make the people at the meeting happier, and more in tune to hear what you are saying."
"Thanks, thats really helpful."
"No problem, have a nice day and let me know if there is anything else I can do for you"
The point here is that it doesn't even matter if "Nate" was telling the truth or not. Green could be a color that makes you hungry, or incepts violence. It doesn't matter. Jane now is going to call all over town and one of the questions she is going to ask is "What color is your meeting place?" Most places will raise an eyebrow and say something like yellow or brown, not realizing they just sealed their fate. Jane wants a room that incepts peace, love, harmony, learning, and suggestion. Cant get that from a yellow room she thinks....
Little does Jane know that "Nate" said that about green because conveniently, his room and no one else's is green. Nate has no idea why his room is green.
How did that work? Because Nate was first. He got to dictate the conversation. He knew that his room had something that no other room had.
A few years ago, I was tired to retaining people and decided to figure out how to be first so that I could influence my clients' purchasing process. I was tired of trying to explain that "green" was just a color and didn't make any difference what they wanted, and that they wanted my product because of .....
I wanted to be the one that got to educate people what they wanted to look for.
Now, I do this by targeting my clients. I know who they are, what series of events makes a person want my product and service, and call them the week that the last event happens. That way, they need me, they need my service, they have actually been thinking about my product and service, they just haven't called anyone yet.
Go out and find someone that is just started shopping for something. You will see that telling someone to look for green is much easier than explaining that green doesn't actually effect their product or service.
Good luck, Happy Hunting.