The Art Of Asking
Yesterday morning, I got a Facebook message to my beauty business asking for a free gift voucher for a ‘worthwhile’ cause – a local school fete I think.
I get a lot of these and we do give up to £2,500 a year to similar requests through our community scheme. But, it was less of an ask, and more of a “who shall I paste my message to next“. It didn’t make me feel very special, warm or giving.
On my lunch break, walking through the town, I saw a stand for Prostate Cancer. From around 10 metres away, the ‘chugger’ saw me – a 48-year-old perfect target market specimen – and without a pause said (loudly enough to travel the now 8-metre distance), “have you got a minute mate?“.
I shook my head slowly as a walked past shouting in my head, you’re not my mate, mate!
If you are asking for something from someone else, you’re entering into a transaction, a form of negotiation; even if it is with another person’s internal dialogue.
You have to assume up-front they will be asking… what’s in it for me?
It doesn’t matter…
- If you are a business asking for an enquiry online.
- A social media user posting stuff YOU think is amazing to make yourself look good.
- A charity trying to attract interest in their cause.
- A local sports club selling sponsorship.
If you don’t put in the effort in the way you ask, why should anyone bother responding?